WHAT WE DO
We create an environment on Bainbridge Island where local agriculture can flourish by managing approximately 60 acres of publicly-owned farmland, providing affordable housing for farm interns, connecting farmers with landowners for affordable farmland, and advocating the communitywide social and economic value of local farms and food.
Small-scale farming has become endangered on Bainbridge Island. Our island-city is experiencing rapid “suburbanization,” with dramatic loss of land that is suitable for farming. Through a variety of means, Friends of the Farms is reversing this trend by:
- advocating for local farming
- managing city-owned farmlands
- involving the community in volunteer efforts
- accomplishing farm infrastructure projects
- performing community outreach
- providing on-farm educational experiences
- creating opportunities for more land to become farmland
Because one of the major barriers to the renewal of small farming here is the high cost of land, our organization focuses on providing workable land for farmers, through a variety of means: acquisition of land through city-sponsored initiatives, collaboration with land trust organizations, creation of leases for appropriate use of city-owned farmland, matching private landowners with farmers, and developing legacy land-giving programs.
We believe that the history of farming on Bainbridge Island is a legacy worth cherishing and that our efforts to keep farming alive, will create a more resilient local economy, protect the natural beauty of the landscape, and provide healthy food for our community.