We’re proud to have worked with our friends at Cultivating Community for over a decade—partnering on events at the brewery, plant sales, volunteering at their community gardens, donations, and more.
And we’re excited to announce that we recently pledged to support their program called NASAP (the New American Sustainable Agriculture Project), with a 3-year commitment of $12,000 per year.
To back up, we want to tell you a little about Cultivating Community to help you see what an inspiring organization it truly is. Based in Portland, Maine, Cultivating Community is a nonprofit that has been building opportunity, and connection, from the ground up since 2001. The bulk of their mission involves empowering people through food.
They also run in-school partnerships, train farmers, work with teens, and maintain 11 community gardens around Portland—open for anyone who’d like to start growing in a raised bed of their own. Our Allagash team has actually volunteered more than a few times, working to keep these community gardens weed-free and in top condition. And, while there, we’ve been able to appreciate just how active the members are in growing a huge variety of flowers and vegetables.
Their four complimentary programs provide land and food access, with a focus on garden education and new immigrants.
One such program is NASAP, based at Hurricane Valley Farm in Falmouth. This farm is operated in partnership with the Falmouth Land Trust with a mission to provide new immigrants and BIPOC community members, who often face more barriers to accessing land, and more food insecurity, with space to grow both culturally important and more traditional crops commonly found in New England. As of 2023, more than 50 gardeners and their families grow veggies on the farm.
Cultivating Community has managed the NASAP program since 2006, and operates two learning farms including an incubation-in-place model that provides land access for farmer training graduates. There, graduates of NASAP grow a wide range of vegetables that are often scarce in American grocery stores—but are staples back home. This mix of crops includes: Amaranth, Roselle, Bilolo, Collard greens, okra and more.
Even better, with support from funding partners, Cultivating Community is also able to deliver fresh food to local food pantries while paying the NASAP farmers a fair price for their harvest: win-win-win for the families, the farmers, and the goal of eliminating hunger in Maine.
If you’re around Portland, you can actually enjoy the fruits (and veggies) of their labor by visiting the Portland Farmers Market on Wednesdays and Saturdays.
We hope you’re as inspired as we are by what the folks at Cultivating Community are accomplishing. And if you’d like to get involved, or support them yourself, you can reach out to them right here.