Where Are They Now?
This is a South African song written in Nelson Mandela’s time. From the 5 years of Thriving Community work we have learned that the individuals we have filmed in the 27 videos have a Bambelela attitude. The team of psychologists lead by Tim Popantz who work with TC have concluded the same. Bambelela means Never Give Up!
We could think of no better example than our first year film on the leadership found at the Greenbank Farm School, an enterprise that has a splendid track record of graduating young farmers, most of whom are active farmers, producing local organic foods in many communities.
Here is their record;
- 41 graduates
- 78% remain in food related production
- 11 have started new farms
- 11 farm managers of other farms
- 1 in seed production
Over 16 months ago the landlords (Port Commissioners) of the Greenbank Farm on Whidbey Island concluded that the property should be used in different ways. The Greenbank Farm School was dismissed. As this process culminated, Judy Feldman, the ED, was exhausted, sad and yet hopeful. Enrollment for the 2016 season was halted, Judy and her small staff went underground … Bambelela.
Through her untiring efforts and, many in the community who supported her, the Organic Farm School, is now in full swing preparing for this coming season. They have a permanent home with enough tillable acres that they can expand and grow. They are embedded in an area of small farms and people who welcome this enterprise with open and collaborative arms. A vision, a track record, a viable need and a community joined in a network of exploration then commitment.
A major part of resilience is finding ways to grow in seasons of drought. The Organic Farm School will re-open for applicants this fall!The Organic Farm School declared on life support only 2 years ago is now thriving and ready for a new class of young farmers. How did a spunky and passionate local community leader make that happen?