Meacham Urban Farm offers choices and instruction in downtown Tampa’s food desert
TAMPA, Fla. — A green oasis currently sits in the midst of a booming town. Nestled involving I-275 and downtown Tampa sits Meacham Urban Farm.
Joseph Dalessio is the proprietor and director of the 2.1 acres.
“We do all organic bio-intensive agriculture,” Dalessio said.
Dalessio is just one of three farmers in the website.
The farm sits only blocks away from downtown Tampa along with the farm might seem as a pop-up for all.
Shalonda Bryon along with her family of three recently discovered it is a stone throw away from their home.
“Literally stumbled upon it because I did not know it existed and I live downtown,” Bryon said.
It might seem like an overnight production, but it has been in the making.
An partnership involving Tampa Housing Authority, HUD, and Hillsborough County schools made this possible.
Hillsborough County Schools supplies the property and are becoming much more involved by producing a program centered on the farm.
In the forthcoming months, pupils will have the chance to see Meacham Urban Farms and learn from the property.
Grants from important companies helped finance the project.
The urban farm is a first of its type in Tampa.
“This is like a lifestyle that we’re trying to promote. It’s the whole package,” Dalessio said.
The aim is to give choices in a food desert place, but it is doing over that.
It’s committing younger generations, such as Bryon’s 18-month-old little woman, an notion about what might be.
“I think it’s amazing that she’s able to see this and it’s making me realize that she’s not a city girl. She’s very much into farms and country lands which I think is very important for kids coming up in the future,” Bryon said.
The farm provides a membership program along with a bargain which is not available in a normal supermarket.
“We accept EBT and then we have a SNAP benefit program so if they use their EBT and spend $20 they actually get $40 worth of value in our farm store,” Dalessio said.
The science supporting the farming is meticulous, but the end game is straightforward.
“That’s our goal is to feed people. That’s it,” Dalessio said.