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Small farm in South Seattle fills souls as well as stomachs

They may be little now, but they have plans to grow. Sponsored by Swedish.

SEATTLE — On the site of an old pea patch, something new has taken root.

"We are at Nurturing Roots farm. We're on Beacon Hill in South Seattle.” Said Nyema Clark, who founded the non-profit farm back in 2016 as a way to help folks around her area have better access to fresh food.

 "A lot of us in the city don't have opportunities to grow produce. Don't have opportunities to source locally," said Clark. "Self-sustainability was something I wanted to bring into Nurturing Roots."

Here you pay for produce not with money, but with the work you put in.

"Primarily it’s all for volunteers who come out, you can free forage and take stuff home," said Clark. “I want to be able to, you know, supply everything that folks need because we're so diverse."

But at times, providing those supplies has been a very hard row to hoe.

"I always wanted it to be the most amazing thing, and it was worth it quitting my job and it's worth it not having money and sacrifice. My friends, holidays, those things. I believe Nurturing Roots was something I had to do for me, to change my mindset and to fulfill my life."

Helping her with that fulfillment is Sherry Williams, Regional Director of Community Health Investment at Swedish. She's known Nyema long before she planted her first seeds of change.

"It's been a long wonderful journey to know her, watch her grow. We're all growing through this evolution of life but she is an important person to our community," said Williams.

Credit: KING 5 Evening
Nyema Clark feeds her girls at Nurturing Roots on Beacon Hill

"We partner with organizations like Nurturing Roots to implement programs and projects to support our community. Swedish's goal is health and wellness, prevention, and education. And the way to make those connections is to go out into the community and learn from organizations that provide those services on a regular basis."

It takes a lot for something to grow. But with hard work and people who believe in you, there's no telling what might bloom.

Clark said, "I want Nurturing Roots to be a space where the community, from any age, sees as a resource. Just like Boys and Girls club. Just like somewhere you'd go to find medical care from Swedish. You can come to Nurturing Roots and we'll give you something that will make your tummy feel better."

Nurturing Roots is trying to expand by acquiring a 39-acre site from Seattle Parks & Recreation out in Auburn. If you'd like to help their cause you can contact them here.

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