Youth Farm and Market Project

aka Youth Farm   |   Minneapolis, MN   |  www.youthfarmmn.org

Mission

At Youth Farm we utilize food as a catalyst for social change, for community engagement, and for leadership development - food is our tool to change the world. Youth Farm’s mission is simple: we farm to grow. We farm to grow food, community, and, most importantly, young leaders. We work with youth ages 9-24, who build leadership skills through planting, growing, preparing, cooking, eating, and distributing food in North Minneapolis and St. Paul. Youth Farm’s goals are: 1. To develop and nurture healthy relationships; 2. To create neighborhood connectedness and opportunities for contribution; 3. To contribute to the positive identity of children and youth; 4. To promote healthy bodies and minds; and 5. To build young leaders.

Ruling year info

1998

Executive Director

Mr. Gunnar Liden

Main address

1420 Dowling Ave. N.

Minneapolis, MN 55412 USA

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EIN

41-1896055

NTEE code info

Agricultural, Youth Development (O52)

Nutrition Programs (K40)

Leadership Development (W70)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Blog

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

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Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Youth Farm's Progressive Program Model

Our youth development curriculum is based on a unique progressive program model that is broken down into four age groups, allowing youth to find increasingly challenging and age appropriate opportunities as they grow older:

Youth Farmers (age 9-11): Throughout the year, Youth Farmers work to master gardening and cooking skills while developing strong interpersonal skills. They also learn about how food choices impact their lives and communities.

All Stars (age 12-13): All Stars take on intentional, specific program and neighborhood leadership roles while focusing on role modeling and cultural responsiveness skills. They also learn about food systems while taking part in the decision-making process surrounding food distribution in each neighborhood.

Project LEAD (age 14-18): Throughout the Project LEAD program, high school-aged youth take part in a school year internship followed by hourly summer employment. Project LEAD participants manage programming for Youth Farmers and All Stars while also designing farms, seeding, planting, weeding, harvesting, and distributing thousands of pounds of fresh produce. Additionally, these young leaders engage their peers, families, and neighbors at community events, actively learning to use food as a tool for change. Through this stage of Youth Farm programming, participants develop mentorship, conflict resolution, leadership, community organizing, and career skills.

Farm Stewards (age 19-24): The Farm Stewards employment program is the final stage of Youth Farm’s progressive program model.

Farm Stewards, who are often Project LEAD graduates, are young adults that Youth Farm supports to become social change leaders and community organizers within their neighborhoods. Throughout this program, Farm Stewards focus on a combination of increasing program opportunities within neighborhoods with high level leadership, building workforce skills, and developing expertise within the context of food, social change, and professional youth development.

Youth Farm has designed the Farm Stewards program to emphasize a more personal and flexible approach to leadership development. We aim to include Farm Stewards at different stages of their personal, educational, and professional development, including those pursuing a long-term career in youth work, students who are earning higher education credit through their Farm Steward employment, and young adults exploring a specific area of Youth Farm’s work in farming, community organizing, nonprofit management, etc.

Population(s) Served
Adolescents
Young adults

Where we work

Accreditations

Charity Navigator 2012

Awards

Sustainability Award - Youth Development 2009

City of St. Paul

Affiliations & memberships

Community Shares 2005

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

In 2020, Youth Farm aspires to be a model youth organization in food and urban farming. Building on a 25-year foundation of youth leadership and engagement in the Twin Cities, we will continue to innovate, creating replicable strategies for youth work, community organizing, food access, and farm and nutrition-based education. We will model district-wide partnerships with school systems to give every student access to farming opportunities, cooking and nutrition curriculum, and fresh food grown by and for their communities.

We will explore opportunities both locally and nationally for increased access to food and leadership development, from neighborhood expansion, to various ways to replicate our youth-centered approach. Our youth leaders will be the heart of a growing national Youth Led Food Movement.

The ideas laid out in this vision stem from our values as an organization, values that honor quality, inquiry, and responsiveness as important parts of our organizational culture and process. To that end, outcomes 1 & 2 focus on our current work and continuing to be the best at what we currently do, and outcomes 3 & 4 focus on stretching ourselves as an organization, exploring the possibilities of new and creative work.

Outcomes

Youth Farm will be actively, effectively, and respectfully engaging young people in leadership opportunities at the program level, organizational level, and community level. Youth Farm will be a model for other youth organizations on how to effectively engage youth in decision making at a community focused non-profit organization.

Youth Farm will improve nutrition and food access of participants and their families by engaging more youth as effective farmers, chefs and community leaders. A continued focus on skill building and high quality leadership experiences will allow for increased impact in the depth and breadth of our work.

Youth Farm will impact in schools at a systems level. We will launch a model partnership with an urban school district to address healthy food access in schools and integrate farming, food access, and skill building into classroom learning.

Youth Farm will explore new and expanded ways to increase the breadth of our work, both locally and nationally to teach best practices in youth development, youth leadership, and urban agriculture. We will publish and promote our Program Model to support Youth Farm influenced work in schools, parks, community centers and youth-serving agencies nationally.

Financials

Youth Farm and Market Project
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Youth Farm and Market Project

Board of directors
as of 02/01/2022
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Kenneth Edwards

General Mills

Kenneth Edwards

General Mills

Alex Lange

Whittier School

Shanna Woods

Girl Scouts of St. Croix Valley

Dorothy Dahlenburg

Retired Financial and Development Professional

Nathan Moen

Life Time, Inc.