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squahs roasting
Photo by Melissa Ripepi

As a Center we are involved in a number of projects that support food systems and community transformation on the ground including those that develop regional food systems, share farmer agroecological knowledge, support regenerative land management practices, and share stories of people working from farmgate to dinner plate. Find out more information below about each of the projects that we currently support. 

This national project funded through a cooperative agreement with USDA's Farm Service Agency and led by Virginia State University aims to increase the number of urban farmers who will learn about and utilize a variety of resources for finance, education, research and outreach to benefit their farm operations.

This statewide project funded through a cooperative agreement with USDA’s Farm Service Agency aims to support urban growers in Virginia through culturally appropriate education, technical assistance, and outreach programming.  

This partnerships project aims to explore and build capacity for a regional food system in the Roanoke region of southwest Virginia. 

Stories of Community Food Work

This project shares narratives or “stories” that express the diverse experiences of people working for food systems change, and include the voices of organizers and practitioners from Virginia and beyond. 

This community-based research and extension/outreach project addresses address concerns related to agricultural labor needs, food supply chain resiliency, the health of vulnerable populations, and the importance of farm safety and wellness for farm workers and agricultural laborers through enhanced understanding of the social and environmental vulnerabilities they face in Virginia.

This project aims to to strengthen the Agrofoerstry Regional Knowledge Exchange Network in Virginia using a collective impact approach to offer enhanced train the trainer programming and coordination of on-farm agroforestry demonstrations.

Our Center supports a number of agroforestry initiatives that train growers and agricultural educators in establishing and maintaining agroforestry systems and that support greater viability of agroforestry at a systems level. 

This project aims to strengthen climate resilience within the regional food systems of four Central Appalachian states by exploring climate-adaptive policies. 

This systems research project aims to identify and promote practical ways of using regenerative grazing practices to improve soil health and catch and hold more rainwater in soil.

Hear from the farmers who are protecting and conserving soil and water resources in Virginia. This narrative inquiry project features on-farm video interviews with 12 farmers. 

Listen in to the 4 the Soil podcast, unlocking the mysteries of soil by speaking with people at the forefront of the soil health movement. Hear and learn from farmers, agricultural professionals, conservation leaders, master gardeners, and many more on how and why to be 4 The Soil.