Elected Leaders Join Community Partners in Groundbreaking Urban Farming Initiative for L.A. Residents

Leaders from Partnership for Growth LA and seven partner organizations, joined with Congresswoman Sydney Kamlager-Dove, Assemblymember Isaac Bryan and Senator Lola Smallwood-Cuevas to announce a groundbreaking new urban farming initiative aimed at addressing food instability and economic inequality throughout parts of South and West LA.

      “When we listen deeply to community, we hear that one in four people—families in L.A. County— are dealing with food insecurity. That out of the 18 grocery stores in South Los Angeles, ten of them do not sell good fruits and vegetables,” said Eddie Anderson, CEO of Partnership for Growth LA and Senior Pastor of McCarty Memorial Christian Church. “So, today, we have partnered with government to show to announce that we will be investing $7 million into South Los Angeles communities to disrupt the food deserts in South Los Angeles.”

      The Freedom Farms program —created out of a historic partnership between McCarty Memorial Christian Church and Jewish Center for Justice — is inspired by a long history of Black-owned farming co-ops. The initiative, that was sponsored by former State Senator (now Congresswoman) Sydney Kamlager-Dove, will focus on creating sustainable, community-led economic development for Black, Latino and other communities of color that have faced a lack of investment throughout history.

      “I am excited about this day and the work I was able to do while I was in the state senate to secure $7 million for this initiative,” said Kamlager-Dove at the official launch of the program was held on July 7th at the Good Earth Community Gardens.

       “When I started talking about urban farming, people thought I was crazy. I am not crazy. This is a country that has politicized and has weaponized food. This is a country with over 5 million children under the age of 18, who are poor and malnourished. This is one of the most overdeveloped countries on the planet, with an agricultural industry second to none that is not doing all it can to make sure all of us are fed, nourished and able to live sustainable lives.

      “Urban farms are happening across this country—Albuquerque, New Mexico, Austin, Texas, Cleveland, Ohio and Detroit, Michigan,” Kamlager-Dove continued. “Los Angeles, with this new partnership, is staking its claim and hopefully will be the beacon for how we merge state, public and private enterprise, how we elevate progressive movements of economic and environmental justice, and how we feed our own with our own.”

      As the demand for locally sourced food continues to rise, urban farms have become increasingly popular across the country, bringing fresh, organic produce and greenery to city residents.  Utilizing innovative farming techniques such as vertical farming, aquaponics, and hydroponics to maximize production in limited space, they transform city spaces into productive agricultural plots, promoting sustainable living and local food production. They not only contribute to food security but also foster community engagement and reduce the environmental impact of food transportation.

      “This is about showing how we sustain and protect our communities to have good, safe and healthy food choices and sources,” said State Senator Lola Smallwood-Cuevas. “As a newly elected state senator, my responsibility—and my good friend, Assemblymember Isaac Bryan— is to make sure that we continue to scale this work and to be an example, because where South Central goes L.A. County goes. Where L.A. County goes, the state goes and where the state goes, the nation goes.”

Share the Post:

Related Posts