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As we enter the third month of trying to secure the land for Cornerstone Farms I reflect on the incredible learning that seems to place everyday in how our current system of real estate, non-profits, farming projects and investors overlap and weave together to create a complex matrix of ideas and strategies to raise $1.5 million dollars to secure a 67-acre farm in half moon bay. Our partnership with the  Rumsen Ohlone Tribe, descendants of the native people of this land, will re-establish a permanent  presence for them and their tribe on the San Francisco peninsula since the horrific genocide that took place in the early 1800's that caused a huge dispersion of the Ohlone.  Our hope is in the creation a Ohlone Community Land Trust in which our farm will have a long term ground lease. These structure will allow the land to be tended by the Ohlone in collaboration with regenerative agriculture in which we share and learn how to tend the wild. I can imagine the days of harvesting Tule from the pond with A Tonio....

In creating the reality of a working farm it has been great working with Steve Peters on the seed side of things,and getting guidance from the folks at Organic Seed Alliance, Don Tipping, Michael Abelman and my good friend Ken Dickerson from the Ecological Farming Association. This has been inspiring and as I wake everyday and try to piece the puzzle together more, it sometimes feels overwhelming, yet I know it is the work that is needed in order to build out something new, a revolution in regenerative agriculture. 

 To date we have been able to secure about 1/3 of the asking price in our partnership with the Peninsula Open Space Trust, POST as they will help us place a agricultural conservation easement on the property and be a partner and sponsor of the project. POST will be the buyer of the land, with a transition to the Ohlone Community Land Trust as it is established in the first 5 years. This will allow foundations and individuals to  donate funds to help secure the land. 

As we figure this out and build our relationships with the numerous foundations, organizations and groups that work in this field we hope to provide a model of how other can do similar projects. Soon I will start to build a resource page here on our website. 

Thank you friends and family for your support, it has been a challenge to wade through the possibilities, yet the opportunity exists to collaborate in a very positive way and build an amazing farm.  Onward and upward!  

 


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