Urban Farms and Urban Farmers Turn Vacant Lots Into Food On Your Table from Eight Sites in Chicago

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Thousands of acres in Chicago are little more than empty fields. But CBS 2 Morning Insider Vince Gerasole learned they could sprout jobs and economic opportunity by converting them into farms.

Urban Growers Collective (UGC) was founded by Laurell Sims and Erika Allen in the fall of 2017. The organization support communities in developing community-based food systems — where food is grown, prepared and distributed within their home communities. The service also provides demonstrations.

Working closely with more than 33 community partners, the goal is to build economic opportunity for youth and mitigate food insecurity and limited access to high quality, affordable and nutritionally dense food. Eight urban farms operate on 11-acres of land predominantly located on Chicago’s south side. These farms are production-oriented with staff integrating education, training, leadership development and food distribution to meet program goals. Each farm utilizes organic growing methods and intensive growing practices that maximize space and year-round production strategies.

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Garden Projects …

Roosevelt Square Youth Farm; Altgeld Gardens Community Farm; Grant Park, “Art on the Farm” Urban Agriculture; Jackson Park Urban Farm and Community Allotment Garden; Educare Preschool Farm; Commonwealth Edison Edible Landscape



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