What if you could learn how to tackle the impact large-scale industrial agriculture has on climate change, food security and the quality of air and water? What if you had the knowledge to make positive changes to your community and its food supply?
Imagine an environment filled with art, gardens and quiet spaces for contemplation and ideating, where you can learn about agriculture, nutrition and sustainability.
Meet Terra Cultura
Our Charity Pot partner, Terra Cultura, is a non-profit organization based in California, founded by Rachel Wohlander, Travis Hill and Jessica Wohlander. It’s a self-described educational farm that offers learning opportunities in agroecology, environmental stewardship and sustainable building techniques.
What’s agroecology? It’s an ecological approach to agriculture that views agricultural areas as ecosystems, and is concerned with the ecological impact of agricultural practices. The agroecology principles Terra Cultura teaches are not only applicable to land management, but also to a process of empowering adaptive, innovative and involved communities. The folks at Terra Cultura place a strong focus on agroecological principles such as soil biodiversity, composting, crop diversity and rotation, microclimate utilization, network and cycle management and closed-loop agriculture.
Working with marginalized groups
While Terra Cultura offers programming to suit people of all ages and backgrounds, they have a strong focus on youth from underserved communities. Take San Benito as an example, where the population is 59 percent Hispanic or Latinx, and more than 10 percent of the county is living below the poverty line. In Monterey County, that number rises to 17 percent. Despite the abundance of farms, both counties have areas where it’s difficult to buy affordable, good-quality fresh food. By attending Terra Cultura’s programs, younger folks can attain the skills required to grow their own food, learn about responsible farming and the wider impact it has on communities.
Investing in the young
Engaging today’s youth in rural, land-based education is essential to ensure the food security of future generations. Rapid urbanization of the country’s youth has led to a decline in rural populations, and a disinterest in agriculture and rural environmental education. Terra Cultura looks to pass on the experience and insights of today’s aging farmers to future generations, while bringing youth back to the land to interact more intimately with their local food systems.
Knowledge is power
By participating in Terra Cultura’s workshops, intensive courses, school field trips, internships and volunteer programs, attendees will gain a deeper connection to their environment, and the knowledge necessary to continue the practices of agroecology and environmental stewardship in their home, farm or garden projects in the future.
By educating people in making healthy, local and sustainable purchasing decisions, and providing opportunities for the public to interact more directly with the source of its food, Terra Cultura is strengthening its local food system, and showing other communities how they can apply the same practices to their day-to-day lives.
Positive change through people
It’s people who are at the heart of Terra Cultura: it exists to provide education and facilities for educators, artists, scientists, volunteers, students and community members. Some of their recent programs include Family Friendly Eco-Arts Project, Professional Development Workshop, Plant the Seed, and A Call for Artists!, all of which you can learn about on their website.
If the Terra Cultura project sounds like something you can get behind, get involved by donating on their site, and spread the word by following them on Facebook and Instagram.
You can also pick up a pot of Charity Pot Body Lotion to support Terra Cultura and other groups like theirs. For every pot purchased, we donate 100 percent of the sales price (minus the taxes) to organizations fighting for human rights, environmental conservation and animal welfare. You can learn more about our Charity Pot partners on our website.