***This blog post is part of a weekly series titled #SignalBoostSunday. This series will highlight organizations and social causes that are of importance and provide assistance to the Greater Atlanta area. ***
For this week’s #SignalBoostSunday, we’re focusing on two organizations that support and provide access to fresh, local and healthy foods to the Atlanta area by either helping the city develop its own urban agriculture or by simply providing its residents access to food grown by local farmers.
The first organization is a year-round farmers market and the other is a local nonprofit that works to develop Atlanta’s urban agriculture by educating the community about gardening and urban farming and providing farmers markets.
Founded in 2014, the Freedom Farmers Market allows city dwellers access to “local, sustainably grown food.” This year-round farmers market is located in Atlanta, at the Carter Center Library, near the Freedom Park trail.
At the Freedom Farmers Market, customers can purchase food cultivated by local farmers and vendors such as fresh produce, meats, cheese, milk, eggs and even baked goods. The farmers market vendors take cash, credit, debit and most notably, SNAP/EBT cards (food stamps). In fact, as part of a partnership with Wholesome Wave Georgia, SNAP/EBT customers are able to double the worth of the SNAP dollars they spend at the market to get more healthy foods for less.
The Freedom Farmers Market is open every Saturday. Saturdays occurring in January and February have the following hours: 9:00 am to 12:00 pm. From March to December, however, the market is open every Saturday from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm.
The Truly Living Well Center for Natural Urban Agriculture (usually simply referred to as Truly Living Well or TLW), works to develop Atlanta’s urban agriculture to provide the following to the community: agriculture training, nutrition, education and job creation.
TLW has four working farms and growing sites to cultivate a wide variety of produce and host their farmers markets and educational programs and events. The two farms are located in Collegetown and East Point, while the two growing sites are located in Atlanta (Harbin Road) and Fayetteville.
TLW offers a wide variety of services and programs. This nonprofit has educational classes and summer camps to help teach gardening and other agricultural concepts. The classes and camps are not free, but TLW does offer scholarships for kids who are interested in the camps but may need financial assistance.
Another initiative offered by TLW is their Growing Families program which provides single mothers of families living at or below the poverty level agriculture-related job training, financial training and mentorship to help them develop their own careers in agriculture. Growing Families is a 12 week training program in which participants will spend a maximum of 12 hours per week.