Hawkins Family Farm and Hope CSA
Just a few miles SE of North Manchester in Wabash County is a 99 acre family farm that combines three major features of climate readiness: Food Security, Green Jobs and Cohesive Community. Jeff and Kathy Hawkins and their son, Zachary, are the principal farmers. Zach has just returned to his farm roots after exploring the wider world. With the help of occasional volunteers and clergy interns, the Hawkins family grows lots of veggies “naturally” without chemicals or artificial fertilizers while raising free-range beef, pork, chickens and turkeys in an interdependent circle of soil nurture and nutritious food. Beyond providing for the Hawkins’ table, the abundant harvest offers seasonal food for several families through CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) shares. Hawkins’ farm food also graces the menu of several area restaurants and can be purchased on site in the Farm Store which is open 8-6 Monday through Saturday.
Food also builds community at and beyond the farm. During the summer, neighbors far and near flock to the Friday-nights home-made pizza parties. Late in September the farm features an annual farm-to-fork-dinning-in-the-gardens upscale (with white table cloths) harvest dinner aptly named Between Heaven and Earth.
Another community building feature of the Hawkins’ Farm is called Hope CSA (Hands-On Pastoral Education using Clergy Sustaining Agriculture). Small groups of area clergy come to the farm one day a month to learn a more “organic” way of life and ministry where soil and soul unite under the tutelage of Jeff Hawkins, himself an ordained Lutheran clergyman.
The entire operation of the farm provides full and part time jobs that enrich and sustain soil, body and soul. Work may or may not be rewarded with money but money is not the motive or measure of a green job. Green jobs are measured by their contribution to a safe, sufficient and satisfying life for this and future generations.
Submitted by John Gibson