Conservation for All Farm Tour Highlights Diversity in North Carolina Agriculture

August 19, 2015

On Thursday, August 27th, Triangle Land Conservancy (TLC) will present the Conservation for All Farm Tour in partnership with the Conservation Trust of North Carolina (CTNC), Transplanting Traditions Community Farm, and the Orange County Partnership for Young Children. The tour will be held at TLC’s J. Logan and Elinor Moore Irvin Nature Preserve in Orange County and will last from 6 PM to 8 PM. Register online for free at triangleland.org/farmtour.

Conservation for All Farm Tour

The nonprofit Transplanting Traditions, located on the Irvin Nature Preserve, provides Burmese refugees who farmed in their native country with land access and agriculture training so the farmers can continue the practice here in North Carolina. By providing land and guidance for the families using the Transplanting Traditions Community Farm, the nonprofit helps families save money by growing their own food and continue traditions from their cultural heritage.

The farm tour is free to the public and will include food grown locally on the farm, beer, and other beverages. Chef Khai will provide participants with authentic cuisine of the Karen people, an ethnic group of Myanmar (Burma) to which many of the refugee farmers belong. While people enjoy the delicious complimentary food, they will also learn about joining Transplanting Traditions Community Supported Agriculture (CSA). The fall season will run from September 9th to October 30th.

TLC began working with Transplanting Traditions in 2010, when the nonprofit was searching for a location to upgrade their community garden into a larger farm. TLC and Orange County Partnership for Young Children worked together with Transplanting Traditions to find land suitable for a farm.

“We began our first growing season at the Irvin Nature Preserve in 2011 and have expanded each year in size. The Irvin Nature Preserve allowed Transplanting Traditions an incredible space for the farm and a partner with common goals surrounding the importance of agriculture in the land conservation movement,” said Kelly Owensby, Project Director of Transplanting Traditions.

After graduating from The University of North Carolina Chapel Hill in 2004, Owensby began working with farms around the Triangle, increasing her interest in healthy food access. Owensby commented, “I certainly feel that healthy food should be available to all and recognize the power of teaching someone to grow their own food. That’s when I got involved with the Orange County Partnership for Young Children’s community garden programs and then started the Transplanting Traditions Community Farm.”

The five-acre farm provides land for farming for 30 families, about 200 adults and children, and allows them to grow over 36,000 pounds of crops a year. Transplanting Traditions has a waiting list for additional families to join the farm as the nonprofit continues land expansion with the help of donations.

The Conservation for All series is part of the Conservation Trust for North Carolina’s (CTNC) Conservation and Diversity Program. This program reaches across racial, economic, generational and geographic boundaries to connect land trusts to all communities.

This event in particular is being planned by CTNC’s Future Leaders of Conservation Board (FLOC). FLOC provides opportunities for students and professionals under 35 to learn about serving on a nonprofit board and to influence conservation work in NC.

“The Conservation for All Farm Tour highlights the agricultural diversity found within the North Carolina conservation community,” observed Tonya Taylor, an inaugural member of FLOC. “It will also raise awareness of the Karen people’s rich agricultural heritage and their story of adaptation throughout our larger Triangle community.”

About Triangle Land Conservancy
Triangle Land Conservancy (TLC) is a membership-supported, nonprofit striving to create a healthier and more vibrant Triangle region by safeguarding clean water, protecting natural habitats, supporting local farms and food, and connecting people with nature through land protection and stewardship, catalyzing community action, and collaboration. TLC’s protected sites in Wake, Durham, Orange, Chatham, Johnston, and Lee counties encompass more than 17,000 acres, including five nature preserves open year-round to visitors, free of charge.

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For more information, or to schedule an interview, contact Diana Hackenburg, Triangle Land Conservancy Communications Manager at 919-908-0056.

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