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Imagine standing in a field of juicy red tomatoes ripening on the vine, dozens of plump, green zucchini squash growing in row and fresh, crisp lettuce heads pushing up from the ground in planter boxes. Now, imagine standing in this field on a farm without ever leaving the city. Welcome to Harris Health’s Community Farm at LBJ Hospital—a 2-acre working produce farm located on the hospital grounds.
The farm was established in 2018 as an innovative, holistic way to fight food insecurity and improve health among Harris Health patients living in food deserts, areas with few or no grocery stores. All the food produced on the farm goes into the community through our Food Rx Program featuring three Food Farmacy, mini-food store locations, a biweekly farmers market and other community food distributions. In 2019, the farm produced 540 pounds of food that was distributed to vulnerable seniors through established partnerships in the neighborhoods surrounding LBJ Hospital. In 2020, the farm increased production by more than 250% and 1,350 pounds of fresh produce was delivered to our on-site Food Farmacies. We expect that number to grow as the farm expands to include a fruit orchard. Future initiatives at the farm include local elementary school education opportunities, a community meeting center and a safe green space for the neighborhood.
How can you help?
The Community Farm at LBJ Hospital is a working farm, so there is always a need for people to get their hands dirty. If you have a group interested in volunteering or completing a project at the farm, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Additionally, there are many goals for the farm that still require funding, such as building infrastructure to make an outdoor learning space, planting a fruit orchard and much more. To support this community-changing initiative, make a gift today.