KMTV- Bloom Community Farm

By Desiree Fawn ( KMVT / KSVT ) – – HAILEY, Idaho 

 The Hunger Coalition is breaking ground on its new Bloom Community Farm.

The farm is located in Quigley Canyon east of Hailey.

The farm is starting as a half acre plot and will eventually increase to one and a half acres.

It is modeled on existing successful programs across the country.

Some of the food grown at the farm will be used in The Hunger Coalition’s community food bank and programs.

They are also looking into starting some discount mobile markets to sell discounted produce in the community.

“We identified there’s up to like a third of the population that could benefit from more affordable, healthy foods at any given point during the year. So, this is an attempt to address that situation of our high cost of living in general in this area and work with community food programs and education to get the food to everybody,” said Lynea Petty, Food Production Manager for The Hunger Coalition.

The Hunger Coalition has already had a lot of success growing its own food at the Hope Garden in Hailey. It’s hoping to expand those efforts with the new bloom farm. Just check out this garlic that they recently harvested. It looks a lot better than what you can buy in the store.

A crew from the Idaho Conservation Corp showed up to lend a hand. The Boise based non-profit helped build a fence around the farm to help keep out the elk and deer.

“We’ve finished up with our fence so we’ve moved on to helping them weed and in addition to that, helping to move some dirt around to help lay the foundation for kind of a children’s play area,” said William Ferry, crew leader for Idaho Conservation Corp.

In 2017, The Hunger Coalition will also implement a youth focused growing program with teens working on the farm.

The Hunger Coalition to start a Community Farm

IMG_3504The Hunger Coalition broke ground in June for a community farm. Located in Quigley Canyon east of Hailey, Bloom Community Farm will provide many opportunities for youth and adults through growing and accessing healthy, local food. The farm will start as a half-acre pilot program and increase to 1 ½ acres in subsequent years. There are a total of five acres available for future use thanks to Quigley Farm, who is leasing the land for $1 per year to The Hunger Coalition.
Modeled on existing successful programs across the country, such as Volunteering for Veggies, Discount Mobile Markets for seniors, and sliding scale Community Supported Agriculture, Bloom Community Farm will help The Hunger Coalition craft new programs to meet the changing needs of individuals and families in Blaine County.

“These types of programs provide multiple avenues for community members to access the healthy food they deserve,” said Lynea Petty, Food Production Manager at The Hunger Coalition.

In 2017, The Hunger Coalition will also implement a youth-focused growing program with teens working on the farm. “With the youth piece of the program, we hope to develop resiliency, foster life skills, and teach coping mechanisms to local youth to help them blossom into healthy, contributing community members,” said Jeanne Liston, Executive Director of The Hunger Coalition.

“The Bloom Community Farm hopes to nurture our community by bringing people together in a family-friendly environment and to connect with the land,” said Naomi Spence, Associate Director. “It’s a ‘good for you place’, providing a gathering place for community members to meet around food, get their hands dirty, and get back to the basics of growing food,” added Spence.

The Hunger Coalition hopes that Bloom Community Farm will provide a place for diverse partnerships with local organizations and continued expansion of food production programs supporting the health and well-being of all community members and their families. They are eager to build upon their successes in emergency food assistance by expanding their programming to reach a broader community.

The Hunger Coalition is seeking volunteers to assist with the startup of Bloom Community Farm. Volunteer needs range from fence and structure building to weeding and bed planting and provide a great opportunity to get the whole family involved. Call Rachel Shinn, Volunteer Manager at 788-0121 or email rshinn@thehungercoalition.org. The farm is located at the south side of Quigley Canyon, past Wood River High School at the end of Fox Acres Rd.

The public will be invited to join The Hunger Coalition for a ribbon-cutting ceremony in October during Idaho Hunger Awareness Month. Stay tuned!