Yet more from the Summit …

Liz Nerat of "The Cooperation Operation"At last weekend’s Midwest Urban Farmers Summit, many groups from around the Chicagoland area were in attendance, but not specifically on the program. Much of the activity that made the Summit a success came from the networking that was going on between representatives of these groups.

One such organization was “The Cooperation Operation”, represented by Liz Nerat. Organizing community farming in Chicago’s Pullman neighborhood, they have only been in existence for a few months, but this typifies much of the new “urban agriculture” movement. Here’s what they say about their mission on their Facebook page:

The Cooperation Operation is a group of food justice activists on the Southeast side of Chicago dedicated to greater health from individual, person-to-person, and environmental perspectives. Using the pre-existing social and ecological landscapes we will create a series of local and sustainable developments to serve as material resources for our community. By building the infrastructure for a high yielding community garden we aim to construct a safe community space for educational, economic and environmental opportunities.

Again, Chicago is at the dawn of a new phase of urban farming, with dozens of small groups like this attempting to get established that will no doubt serve as a foundation for the upcoming “official” move into this arena by the City with “The District” and related projects. It is certainly going to be helpful to future developments to have communication channels grow out of events like this Summit, where so many individuals and groups involved in establishing farming operations are able to meet, become familiar with each other, and exchange ideas!

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