— Current Events —
Homefields Farm’s 2018 Season is officially over and we are turning our attention toward Spring preparations. Speaking of which, you may now sign up for the 2019 Season by clicking on that purple button at top right (or go directly to homefieldsfarm.csasignup.com/members/types
Once again, we will offer the Early Bird Discount until January 31 (which will reduce your half share total by $25, and your full share total by $50).
Plus, we are offering a shareholder referral credit this year. Any shareholder who refers a new shareholder will receive a referral credit for their share. Shareholders who refer a friend who signs up for a half share will receive a $40 credit, shareholders who refer a friend who signs up for a full share will receive a $75 credit on their share. To refer a friend, please send an email to email@example.com.
Homefields is happy to be one of five farms that presented at the Mid-Atlantic Care Farming Summit. Care farming is the therapeutic use of farming practices for vulnerable groups of people. The summit took place at Red Wiggler Community Farm in Germantown, Maryland, and the objective was to convey challenges and successes for the benefit of all.
Light rain could not dampen the spirit of community at our Picnic in the Fields on September 23. Friends, families, shareholders, residents, volunteers, and farmers engaged in craft projects, lawn games, a bonfire, and of course, conversing, partaking, and quaffing. Thanks to Chef Steve Gainer and Al Duncan from Miller’s, and Bobbi Carmitchell and Friends for the live music. Special thanks to all who came out, and those behind the scenes, for supporting our residential and vocational missions. See you next year!
Our 22nd Annual Fall Golf Tournament was clearly one of the greatest on a number of levels, and the list of people to thank for this success is long. In no particular order: our outstanding golfers, devoted sponsors, and dedicated volunteers are what keep this annual fundraiser on-point. Spotlight on the staff at CSG, the Homefields Golf Planning Committee, the staff at Crossgates, and CopperHill Brewery for keeping the corners of mouths pointed upward. Thank you all and we look forward to seeing you at the 23rd!
Visit this page to check out our sponsors.
Welcome, members of Meaningful Day Academy (Friendship Community)! This gang will be volunteering at the Farm every Friday until November. Here they are on their first day, when they prepared garlic for shareholders. Great to have you with us.
If you’re at the Farm on Thursdays, say “hi” to our friends from ODC. The Occupational Development Center provides vocational training for adults with developmental disabilities. Their members help us with weekly projects such as propagating seedlings and preparing produce for pickup.
Sunflowers in the house! Zoa Kile and Katie Landis harvested bamboo from neighbor Mary and Fritz Schroeder. Brandon Santiago and father and son Don and Brad Turner built the bamboo structure. Mike Hurrell joined Bradley in digging the beds. Now we get to watch Bradley's Sunflower House grow!
It can’t be all work and no relaxation! Elizabeth and Amy led a group of folks through beneficial gentle tai chi and yoga exercises on Saturday, June 16, by the greenhouses.
The Lancaster County Conservancy provided free native trees to CSA shareholders during first pickup (6/7–6/9), to coincide with Lancaster Water Week. The focus is on protecting 1500 miles of streams and rivers that provide our drinking water, areas of recreation, and base for agricultural and economic growth. How cool is that?
Homefields on YouTube
It’s been over two decades since we bought the horse farm that started this all (really?!?). Yet it wasn’t until fairly recently that Tom Strauss, one of our founding fathers, created a video that distills our 25-year history into less than 5 minutes. Check it out. Click on the “Watch YouTube.com” logo at near bottom right to see in a larger screen.
—Our History: A Synopsis—
In 1991, a group of parents and invited professionals came together to discuss the state of affairs for their children, and the plight of Lancaster County adults with mental retardation and other disabilities. Existing programs were at capacity with long waiting lists. Our group, determined to build a step where none existed, imagined a more flexible environment where adults with mental retardation and other special needs, families, and the community, would partner together to create new opportunities.
We wrote a mission statement expressing a desire for a financially secure, long-term home in a safe, family-like setting where there is respect for the individual in a holistic sense, and where fun and creativity are revered as basic human needs. The home would be situated on land that supported a small farming operation with year-round projects. This environment, with many on-going activities, would stimulate residents and offer them new options. Then we took that dream and made it come true.
In 1994, five families who love an adult member with special needs, incorporated, pooled their finances, and purchased an eight-acre horse-boarding farm in Millersville, PA. Homefields’ philosophy is a nurturing, self-sufficient one, so the people who eventually moved to Homefields, with the help of their families, were instrumental in renovating and personalizing their own home. Everyone rolled up their sleeves to remodel a ranch house, restore a stone house, disassemble and move a fence, paint a barn, clean up the grounds, and plant even more flowers. Three years after the first meeting, three adults who require assisted living moved into the stone house. Soon after, the ranch house was completed and three other residents moved into that home.
The residents continue to live as independently as possible at Homefields. They are supported by the professional staff of Community Services Group, are loved by their families, and are protected through the watchfulness of family members, advocates, Behavioral Health and Developmental Services (BH/DS) of Lancaster County, and Homefields' Board of Directors. New families have come our way seeking a home for their cherished son or daughter. The Homefields Farm vocational farm program has taught work skills to over 200 farmer trainees. Hundreds of families have been nourished by the farm’s organic produce, grown by adults with disabilities and other barriers to independence.
Civic Leadership Award
Homefields received the 2013 Walker Center’s Distinguished Civic Leadership Award from Millersville University, recognizing “individuals or organizations that make noteworthy civic and community contributions of local, regional, national or international impact and who have been a catalyst for encouraging civic engagement on the part of others.”
Urban Preservation Award
Homefields received the C. Emlen Urban Preservation and Honor Award at the 41st Annual Meeting of the Historic Preservation Trust of Lancaster County in November 2007. The award was for outstanding effort in preserving and restoring a 140-year-old outbuilding (our current office), and is especially cherished as it was accomplished by reusing all salvageable material, primarily through volunteer labor and expertise, including donations from blueprint to timber framing, masonry, electrical, roofing, and flooring.