Happy 2018 to you all!
2017 started with an exciting new plan to develop a student driven, collaborative CSA that was affordable and contributed to our community in positive ways. We partnered with Tree A’Lolly farms in Doney Park and the Women Infants and Children program of Coconino County. Ten people signed up for our trial year and we had plans to donate to WIC. What an exciting and stressful experience. Every week, we marveled at what was coming out of the ground, while worrying if everything was going to grow or if we would have enough food for the shares. Is there enough variety? Will people know what to do with the produce? Are people going to be sick of lettuce? Better yet, when will people get sick of lettuce?
Looking back, we hardly had anything to worry about. We had an abundance of produce! We grew over 1600 pounds and of that, donated 550 to WIC. Our shares averaged 5.5 pounds each and we offered 70 different fruits, veggies, teas, herbs, and flowers as part of the share.
We were certified as a Sustainable Project and Community Partner with Coconino County. We gave tours to the greater Flagstaff community through the Garden Ninjas, Sustainable Homes Tour, and 15 different classes and school groups ranging from elementary through college aged. We visited five classrooms to give presentations about the EcoRanch. In all, we had direct contact with approximately 450 individuals. We collaborated with two river guides who worked for AZRA (a local rafting company) and collected 425 pounds of compost from five river trips. The guides were able to teach approximately 100 clients about the importance and ease of composting. We educated 750 tourists about sustainable living and water, energy, and resource conservation through ecotourism with our student designed, self-guided tours and educational packets, a requirement of each intern and capstone group.
We were able to secure $3500 in grants from Flagstaff Foodlink and the WWOOF organization that allowed us to upgrade to a more efficient irrigation system, further reducing our water use, and create a safer working environment onsite through electrical upgrades in the barn. Thanks to Warner’s and Goodman Electric for their assistance on these projects! Inside the house, we installed a high efficiency wood stove to further reduce our dependency on fossil fuels, switched to LED lights in all light fixture, two more energy star fans to help circulate warm air in winter. And finally, we offset our water, electricity, and fuel use through Terra Pass (it cost $200 for the year) and we encourage you to do the same.
If anyone is interested in helping fund our organization so we can maintain an upward trajectory and continue to support sustainable education in Flagstaff while growing healthy, affordable produce for our community, we would appreciate your generosity. You can send us a check, donate through Paypal, or contact us via phone or email to make arrangements and we will send you a donation letter for your tax records.
Below are some photos and a quick summary of 2017 in numbers.
HANDS ON EDUCATION AND COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT
- 11,024 volunteer hrs since 2012 valued at $121,264.
- WWOOFers – 41 total since 2012
- 456 hrs educational presentations/workshops/tours
- Hosted 26 interns since 2012
- Supported 21 capstone students at NAU since 2012
- Tours and presentations to 450 individuals
- Outreach to 750 tourists staying in our Educational Airbnb
- 2413 lbs produce
- 647 lbs – Nonprofits and underserved populations
- 695 lbs – Local business
- 2949 – Local eggs
- Student driven, collaborative CSA provided 1134 lbs of produce and donated 554 lbs to families through WIC
- 35,817 gallons saved and reused since 2012 (with 4550 rainwater gallon storage)
- Showers (402 gal 2017)
- Toilets (1902 gal 2017)
- Grey water system (3976 gal 2017)
- Trash Production – 0.76 lbs/person/day (4.4 lbs/person/day Ave American)
- Compost Collection – 425 pounds collected from AZRA and 1020 pounds from ITEP employees