Celeste McMullan is one of 15 interns working with the central Pennsylvania–based LEAF Project, a nonprofit that provides paid summer farm internships to teenagers. The mission of LEAF, which stands for Leadership Education and Farming, is to reconnect young people with the food they eat, the land on which it’s grown, and to each other through hands-on farming, learning and community outreach.
At New Orleans’ Recirculating Farms Coalition (RFC), vegetables grow in an intricate system of recirculating aquaculture systems and raised garden beds. Founded in 2009, the nonprofit organization trains urban farmers in both soil-based farming and fish farming—a combination that provides food for the local community.
Now, thanks to a federal grant, RFC has received $500,000 to create a more robust free training program for budding urban farmers, specifically targeting its outreach and support to new farmers in some of the most low-income and underserved communities in New Orleans: Central City, Algiers, New Orleans East, the Seventh Ward, and the Ninth Ward.