The Afya Community Teaching Garden is a 1.5 acre farm created to provide a tangible solution to the nutrition desert of Baltimore's Park Heights Community. We seek to not only grow food for the community but teach others to do so in an effort to increase environmental sustainability, economic sovereignty, and community cohesion.
As a social justice farm our goal is to jointly provide our neighbors equitable access to fresh food in a way that allows us to keep producing it.
To accomplish this we use a total of three methods:
1. Buy what you'll eat. As a practice of growing culturally appropriate, easy to prepare vegetables and fruits because we grow food for people not for compost piles and waste bins. Our Growing Food Together CSA (GFT CSA) offers three different share sizes designed to offer the amount of food members desire at a price they can afford�standard, half and quarter. The standard share is $350 for the six month season and is designed to feed a family of four each week for 22 weeks. That means for just over $16/week you can feed your family locally grown produce, grown with love and free of pesticides, herbicides or synthetic fertilizers. The half share is $200 ($9/week) and is designed to feed two people each week. This share size is also popular with couples with a small child or singles with a veggie-based diet. The quarter share was designed with seniors in mind. It feeds one person per week and averages out to less than $5/week, $100 for the full season. Like each of the share sizes, they are designed to minimize waste, and maximize disposable income. However, if one does not have income, we encourage them to participate in our final share option, our sweat-equity program.
2. Payment Options . We accept all forms of payment including cash, credit, debit, SNAP, and labor via our sweat-equity share. In addition to the forms of payment we accept, we offer several payment schedules for members to participate. As a member of the CSA you have the option to pay in full, month-to-month, with the sweat-equity of yourself and/or people you bring with you or some combination of the two. For members who need additional support, we are available and open to creating a payment plan that works for you.
3. Cost. Our CSA is on average 30-50% less than other CSAs in the area the largest share size totaling $350 for 22 weeks 6 months. In this way we are able to raise enough money to support the garden and keeping our rates affordable for our neighbors who need it most.
The Sweat-Equity Program is an apprenticeship-style partnership between and the Afya Community Teaching Garden; it is an integral part of how we do what we do. Members who elect to pay through sweat-equity can still choose any of the aforementioned share options; but, instead of paying with cash, credit, debit or SNAP, they pay with labor: 7hrs/wk, standard; 3.5hrs/wk, half; and 2hrs/wk, quarter. Sweat-equity members gain hands-on experience in managing a small-scale intensive farm operation and the tangible tools to replicate the experience at home.
For more information on how to get involved give us a call or email our Farm Manager Sach� Jones
The Afya Community Garden and Growing Food Together CSA are both programs of the Park Heights Community Health Alliance's (PHCHA) Urban Oasis Food Justice Program. They join the Park Heights Community Farmers Market and Annual Brassica Fest in a program designed to provide affordable, nutrient rich fruits and vegetables for the residents and supporters of the Park Heights Community and educate them on how to use their access to improve their overall health and wellness.
Season: May through November
Type: multiple farm
# of Shares: 85
Share Prices: $350 seasonal, $60/mo, 7hrs/wk sweat-equity
Work Req? No
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