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Street Farm: Growing Food, Jobs, and Hope on the Urban Frontier Paperback – August 9, 2016

5.0 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Chelsea Green Publishing (August 9, 2016)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1603586024
  • ISBN-13: 978-1603586023
  • Product Dimensions: 6.9 x 0.6 x 9.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #135,542 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Paperback
This book reveals the deep connection we all have to nature and to meaningful work and the power of both to redeem our lives. It reads almost like a mystery, keeping us in suspense as Ableman and his fellow farmers encounter never ending challenges that many times appear to be insurmountable. Told with engaging prose and evocative photographs Ableman's story is one of recovering the undying beauty and dignity of humanity in a place where all hope was lost.
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When you have finished reading this book, you will feel a strong sense of hope. Michael Ableman is a gifted storyteller--in words and photos. The story of the human connection with the land and the life-sustaining magic of the soil is one that Ableman has told so well in previous books, so much so that they remain as the seminal tomes that have inspired those fueling the revival of local, intensive, human-scale agriculture. Street Farm goes beyond by describing, in an extremely touching way, an almost unbelievable case study of an urban farming venture Ableman launched in the heart of Vancouver's downtown, employing those society has left behind. Ableman's story reveals the power of this experience for him, having learned much about those who are far less privileged than most and, for those who benefited from having a purpose in life that connected them to nature's most basic wonders that are revealed in farming.
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Format: Paperback
In Street Farm, Michael Ableman narrates the gritty tale of getting land and growing food in Vancouver's Downtown Eastside, "home of the term skid row", the notorious hell realm of hungry ghosts. The background conversation of Sole Food farms was about a way to provide jobs for the most unlikely, the ones without hope, and as Ableman shares, the ones who need a reason to get out of bed each day, "a choice to make something that is life-giving". Street Farm introduces us to characters many of us would never meet so intimately; the homeless addicts we fear will rob us or worse – reveal to us life's unfair cruelties. Besides the bigger picture of healing a community with good food and meaningful work, Ableman gets us to look at local food in a new way; just how local is that Nicose salad served in February? Local food in Vancouver has become a trend and Sole Food is at the helm, thanks to forward-thinking chefs & restaurants supporting where and who is involved with their – our – food. More than a book, Street Farm is a portal into the heart & soul of the once vacant lands of lost souls – proving anything is possible.
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Format: Paperback
Even before I finished reading Street Farm I began to reread, to revisit whole chapters, to encounter anew the raw truth and the refinement revealed by this exceptional story teller. From the opening portrayals of contradiction and compromise playing out in the city’s back alleys, all the way through to the precise descriptions of how to set up an irresistible produce stand at the farmers’ market, every chapter is brilliant and provocative.
Within the context of Sole Food, a large scale experiment in urban agriculture and job creation, Michael Ableman has recounted a tale of gutsy innovation and courageous connections, of unanticipated synergy and surprise in unlikely relationships. The story shows us the subtle ‘wins’ that result from mindfulness in leadership. It demonstrates the challenging path this non-profit team is forging through an urban frontier, one that at times requires trial and error methods to get past or go around an array of threats and setbacks.
Michael bears witness to powerful emotion stirring in the hearts and bodies of skid row residents-turned- farmers as they experience the glorious beauty of fruits and vegetables responding to their care and attention. He uncovers hope and meaning within confusion and pain. He acknowledges those who help on occasion, both individual benefactors and also companies and city government. Inasmuch as Street Farm reveals communion and community developed through visioning, trust and perseverance, at the same time it underscores the cycles and insecurities of change and impermanence that make us wonder about the future of the Sole Food project.
Michael Ableman has written about food and ‘farmily’ with an honest, graphic, non-judgemental and intelligent language.
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