Photos By Aliya Benudiz. All Rights Reserved.
Acta Non Verba and City Slicker Farms are excited to announce a collaborative, organizational merger! This partnership will expand on years of efforts to bring healthy, accessible, and culturally relevant food to urban communities struggling with systematically created food insecurity. Not only that, but it will also provide a fun new location for Camp ANV and other Youth Programming: The West Oakland Farm Park!
The Acta Non Verba Team are now the proud stewards to a new farm site: The West Oakland Farm Park.
The West Oakland Urban Farm Park (WOFP) is 1.4 acre working urban farm, educational space, and outdoor recreation site located at 2847 Peralta St. in Oakland, CA. It was created and conceived by and for the 3,000 community members in the surrounding neighborhoods, and intended to be a focal point of community pride and activity for residents of West Oakland. It is a safe space for recreation and connects neighbors over the growing, preparing and sharing of food; promotes environmental conservation, serves as an example of how we can reclaim the ecological integrity of the land; and expand access to healthy foods for low income families in Oakland.
The Farm Park includes a number of features to increase environmental sustainability: drip irrigation, rainwater catchment, recycled and reused construction materials, native plants, organic cultivation methods, habitat for pollinators, growing food locally, environmental education programs, recycling and composting receptacles, a fruit orchard, chicken coop, and even a playground, outdoor classroom, lawn, and children’s garden! There is also an outdoor Demonstration Kitchen, where cooking classes, herbal remedy making, and other workshops are held.
The site is a lush and productive farm with rows and rows of organic vegetable and fruit beds, as well as a dedicated herb garden where culinary and medicinal herbs are grown for utilization in workshops or for the Town Fridge.
It is also a host site for The Town Fridge Collective, a group that was started to help support food insecure families in Oakland during the pandemic. The collective actions is rooted in the tradition of mutual aid, which emphasizes people helping people without hierarchy or shame. Mutual aid projects have proliferated in the wake of COVID-19 as the need for community members caring for each other has grown.
At the WOFP, thousands of pounds of food are grown each year in order to increase healthy food access to the community. They are able to stock the fridge with fresh produce we’ve grown, as well as contribute space and electricity for the fridge at the Farm Park. As always, first priority goes to unhoused, low- and fixed-income and BIPOC community members, as well as members of our Garden Program. However, any community members may drop off food and any community members may pick up food. Just outside the farm gates, you can find the 24hr Free Fridge, where neighbors can come pick up free produce that is grown on the farm. In 2021 alone, over 4,000 pounds of produce was grown and distributed for free via the Town Fridge program.
In addition, the WOFP has a section dedicated to the Community Garden,which consists of 28 irrigated plots. This section was designed with West Oakland residents who do not have a space to grow food in mind. Gardeners can take advantage of the all the supplies and support at the Farm Park, including free soil, starts, trainings and workshops.
Looking for a spot to host your next birthday, team meeting, family reunion, wedding, retreat or other event? The West Oakland Farm Park is a wonderful outdoor space to host a variety or events and meetings while also supporting food justice in Oakland! Learn more about renting the farm park HERE.
Acta Non Verba is excited to support the ongoing development of this wonderful urban oasis. We are excited to work with the City Slicker Farms team to create an active and exciting farm space where our youth participants can reconnect with their food and the land with excitement, which in turn, will empower them to make healthier and more sustainable choices in their diet and beyond!
Together, we will continue to serve the Oakland community through a lens of public health, knowing that food accessibility is the first building block to healthy and thriving families. By continuing existing programming as well as developing new ones, this collaboration will maintain the common mission of providing a stable stream of accessible food to populations who need it most, as well as ensuring that safe urban green spaces are accessible to all.
By combining the collective visions of ANV and CSF, we will create more opportunities for youth development, increase access to urban green space, and raise awareness of the powerful role of urban agriculture in our communities. With our collective resources, we will also be able to maintain long term, sustainable stewardship of the land that the West Oakland Farm Park occupies so that it may continue to serve the residents of West Oakland for years to come.
Learn more about the West Oakland Farm Park HERE!
Photos By Aliya Benudiz. All Rights Reserved.