Rural communities face intersecting challenges due to remote locations, gaps in services, and fluctuating economies. Community collaborations hosted by Heritage Ranch create solutions that increase access to services and improve rural quality of life today and tomorrow.
Building a Just and Accessible Food System
Heritage Ranch sponsors food access and education programs in Washington, Hawaii and California. Flagship programs:
The Arts and Food are the Heart of Rural Life
In person and online cultural, place making and education programs have been hosted since 2004 in California, Hawaii and Washington.
Current work is focused on fostering cultural arts and services for the San Juan Islands Makers Guild and community design place making programs in Washington.
Community Collaboration on Sustainability Solutions
Listening to rural community needs, convening stakeholders to find solutions, and implementing problem solving strategies that build rural strengths is a core goal of Heritage Ranch.
The San Juan Islands Innovation Center is a new community resiliency project under development in Washington.
Work in Hawaii saw the building of a Sustainable Living Center and hosting on-farm and community based education programs in affordable housing, food gardens, solar energy, organic farming, health and wellness, youth camps, Americorps internships, and cultural arts exhibits and events. Program support has come from HUD Rural Economic and Housing Program, USDA Rural Utilities, National Endowment for the Arts, National Food and Agriculture Institute, Hawaii Dept of Labor, Hawaii Dept of Agriculture, AmeriCorps, USDA FMPP and Peoples Garden, and local supporters. The most recent work has been hosting the Same Canoe Veggie Rx program that serves 12 health clinics and their patients through a local healthy produce access network operating 2015-2024.
Heritage Ranch began holding listening circles on the islands off the coast of Washington in 2008 and relocated its headquarters to Orcas Island in 2018. Now serving the Salish Sea area with a focus on the San Juan Islands, programming has included hosting the One Canoe Veggie Rx food access program, collaborating with the San Juan Islands Conservation District on Island Farm Tours and Food Heroes projects, and assisting with the San Juan Islands Agricultural Guild 'Island Grown' programs.
Current activities include developing the San Juan Islands Makers Guild, hosting cultural arts and foods programs and exhibits, and collaborating with the planning group for a proposed San Juan Islands Innovation Center. Support to date has come from the National Institute for Food and Agricultural, USDA Rural Business Development, Washington State Dept of Commerce, Small Business Administration, and San Juan County.
Heritage Ranch was founded in California in 2004 and our first project was a distance learning program called Camp Internet that worked with a rural desert community in California and two rural island communities in Hawaii. Support came from USDA Rural Utilities and participating school districts, science and cultural partners.
Recent work in California includes developing a food access and nutrition education program on the northern California coast, supporting regenerative agriculture, and collaborating on cultural arts program development.
Hawaii Stakeholders and Facility Providers: Rural health clinics, public schools, the Bishop Museum, Honolulu, North Kohala Library, University of Southern California, local non-profit cultural organizations.
Washington Project Stakeholders: Rural health and nutrition clinics and programs, San Juan Islands Conservation District, San Juan Islands Agricultural Guild, Island Grown Farm Tours, the Northwest Agriculture Business Center, Transition San Juan, The San Juan Island Grange, The San Juan Island Chamber of Commerce, the San Juan County Food System Team.
Washington Facility, Research and Programming Colleagues: Inspire Washington, Orcas Center, Lopez Grange, Pelindaba Lavender Farm, San Juan Island Grange, Odd Fellows Hall,San Juan County Economic Development Council, San Juan County Arts Council, Lopez Community Land Trust, Housing Lopez, OPAL Community Land Trust, San Juan County Community Development, Lopez HIstory Museum, Lopez Locavores, Kwiaht, 13 Moons, Orcas Library, Lopez Library, San Juan Island Library.
Washington Farms and Food Organization Beneficiaries: Orcas Food Coop, San Juan Islands Food Hub, Morning Star Farm CSA, Orcas Food Bank, Orcas Farmers Market, San Juan Farmers Market, Orcas Senior Center, Lopez Senior Center, Orcas WIC Families, Maple Rock Farm, West Beach Farm, Orcas Farm, Lum Farm, Horse Drawn Farm, Watmough Bay Farm, Roche Harbor Farm, Aurora Farm, Sunnyfield Farm, Barn Owl Bakery, North Star Farm.
Over the last 20 years of services, Heritge Ranch has been fortunate to have a Board of Directors that includes education, farm, value-added food, grants writing and financial expertise.
The current Board includes Washington Board Member, Marcy Montgomery (program director and grants manger of $8.07 million in funded projects), California Board Member, Robin Pilatti (nurse, educator and fiber artist), and Hawaii Board Member, Casey McCarty (farmer, educator and green energy developer).
Heritage Ranch (HR) was awarded 501c3 status in 2004 and is incorporated as a charitable organization in Washington State. HR has been the fiscal sponsor for a variety of initiatives and programs aligned with its rural strengthening mission.
Specific programs hosted by HR develop their own stakeholders and local advisory committees.
Heritage Ranch, PO Box 521, Eastsound WA 98245
We are All in the Same Canoe! Together, we can do more than we can do alone. Let's bring our abilities and passions together to effect real change.
There are many ways to join us and support our mission. Contact us to find out more about volunteer opportunities, fundraising events, and ways that you can get our message to your friends and family.
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