Providence Farm Collective

Primary Contact

Beth Leipler


[email protected]

Additional Contacts

Mo Mberwa [email protected]

Providence Farm Collective (PFC) is a non-profit grassroots organization established following a three-year pilot project, the Somali Bantu Community Farm (SBCF), which was launched to address inequities in farmland and fresh food access. The Somali Bantu have deep agrarian roots and generations of experience in farming. When resettled as refugees, however, they were homed to West and East-side neighborhoods in Buffalo where the legacy of redlining, disinvestment and resultant lack of access to fresh food continues today. Hearing parallel challenges experienced by other refugee and Black communities in accessing farmland, SBCF founders conducted extensive outreach to farm programs across North America to learn what was working and what was not. This information was then contextualized based on the expressed needs of the refugee and Black communities in Buffalo and the socio-economic landscape of WNY. As a result, PFC was founded in 2019 with a mission of cultivating farmer-led and community-rooted agriculture and food systems to actualize the rights of under-resourced peoples and vision of empowering just and equitable access to food and farmland. PFC is the only non-profit in WNY that directly empowers refugee and Black communities with access to rural farmland, farming and business education, technical assistance, markets, and the opportunity to farm for income all while passing important cultural traditions down to younger generations. PFC has both incubator farmers, those working to start their own agricultural small business, and community farmers, those growing collaboratively to provide cultural food to meet intra-community food security needs. As of 2022, PFC has 21 small farms under its umbrella with 275 farmers from nine unique refugee, immigrant, and Black communities.

Through the FNGNY program, Providence Farm Collective (PFC) will work alongside its refugee, immigrant, and Black farmers to understand and assess their future farming and land access goals and begin preparing farmers for the next steps in their farming journeys. Additionally, PFC staff will build expertise and capacity in guiding farmers by undergoing land access training. A tracking sheet will be developed to more formally inventory potential land access opportunities for PFC farmers. Further, staff will explore what and how wrap-around services may be offered to farmers who launch from PFC and access other farmland. To support farmers in networking and  to increase awareness among the greater WNY farmer, landowner, and agricultural service provider community of the unique goals and needs of PFC farmers, PFC aims to host two relationship-building gatherings, as well as organize visits and tours for its farmers to other successful farms in the region.

Regions Served

Western, Erie County, Niagara County, Bronx County, Brooklyn County, New York County, Queens County, Richmond County

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