The Serving Ourselves Farm at Boston’s Long Island Shelter
The Serving Ourselves Farm at Boston’s Long Island Shelter helps feed hungry bodies, minds, and spirits. The Farm is a 4-acre organic farm including 2.5 acres of vegetables and herbs, as well as fruit trees, laying hens, and an apiary located on Long Island on Boston Harbor. Baystate Organic Certifiers certifies the Farm organic and recognizes it as using environmentally sound and sustainable agricultural practices.
Each year, The Farm produces 25,000 pounds of beautiful, first harvest produce (eggs and honey too) for the over 800 homeless individuals served each day by the Long Island Shelter’s kitchen and has a tremendous impact on the quality of food the individuals in the shelters and programs receive.
Beside delicious and nutritious produce, The Farm also provides hands-on job training, work-readiness skills, life skills and education for homeless individuals as part of the Serving Ourselves Job Training Program. Participants learn all aspects of food production; soil preparation, a variety of planting techniques, tending the plants, pest control, harvesting and marketing their produce at local farmers markets.
The Farm also gives those in the Culinary Arts track of Serving Ourselves the opportunity to work with a wide variety of vegetables and herbs, and learn skills that would otherwise not be possible due to prohibitive cost, like pickling, drying, and cooking with fresh herbs. The experience gained in these programs has led to permanent, gainful employment in the restaurant, food, horticulture and landscaping industries. For example, one employee started a landscaping business, one went to work with a well-known florist in Boston and another pursued her education and employment in floriculture.
In the spirit of feeding hungry bodies, minds, and spirits, about 20% of the Farm’s bounty is also sold at Dorchester House and Bowdoin Street Health Center’s Farmers Markets in Dorchester which serve an ethnically-diverse and largely low income population and accept SNAP/EBT and senior coupons.
The Farm provides wonderful volunteer opportunities for individuals and for corporate, church or college community service projects. Land clearing, planting and harvesting while working side-by-side with program participants is a rewarding experience for all. If you, your company or school would like to volunteer for a day (or two) on our organic farm, please contact Marianna Bucina at (617) 942-8671 or via email at email@example.com Individual volunteers under the age of 21 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.The Farm provides wonderful volunteer opportunities for individuals and for corporate, church or school.
You can also support The Farm and help feed hungry bodies, minds, and spirits through our Adoption Program!
Adopt-a-Row (of veggies): $10
Adopt-a-Laying Hen: $25
Adopt-a-Fruit Tree: $50