It all began on a Saturday in February 2014 with four people, after a gentleman by the name of Johnny Coleman, came to speak to the board of directors at God’s Food Bank about planting some food to donate but needed more hands on deck. About 100 days later, together they both harvested and donated 800 pounds of potatoes to the food bank.
Jennifer Bozarth, President of Vision Farms, said the 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization produces healthy, sustainable and ethical food, but is not just about farming. At the heart of its mission is community outreach, involvement and supporting community agriculture. Between active partnerships with hot meal outreach programs, Logan County Aging Services, educational programs and workshops –– Vision Farms has the equipment and tools to get you started.
Community Supported Agriculture has been a main focus of the last year, with Vision Farms starting programs such as equipment sharing and seed buying.
Bozarth spoke about the coordinated efforts with local farmers and market gardeners to retrieve an organic fertilizer order from Missouri after finding out the cost of shipping doubled the total price.
“We had such a big order [from at least a dozen farmers], we had to get a bigger trailer and truck to go get it. We were able to save $3900 to these local farmers and market gardeners just by going and getting the fertilizer,” Bozarth said.
Another pillar of the Vision Farms mission is food sovereignty and security. Food deserts, as defined by the CDC, are mostly rural areas that lack access to affordable fruits, vegetables, whole grains, low-fat milk and other foods that make up a full and healthy diet.
“What food sovereignty means is that all people, no matter your social or economic status, should have access to the best food available,” Bozarth said. “Food security is just making sure that those who need it [the] most, get it and that we are feeding those that are hungry.”
In terms of advice for those interested in starting their own gardens, Vision Farms would be happy to help anyone reach that goal by either coming to you or through volunteering with them. Education is key and Bozarth said that volunteering is how she got her start.
Due to the unpredictability brought on by severe weather, following the Vision Farms Facebook page is the best way to stay updated about how to get involved. For those not on Facebook, if there’s someone out there who wanted to either learn or already knows how to do plowing, tilling and other tractor work, contact Vision Farms by phone at (405) 570-2505.
The fourth annual Farm to Fork Fundraiser is on October 12. Tickets will be available to the public by July 15 and are always sold on Eventbrite. For more information, visit the Vision Farms Facebook page.