The Retreat at Nightingale Farms
Help me build accommodations for an eco retreat to fund the restoration of a coffee farm in the Jamaica Blue Mountain
MAY 1 - MAY 31, 2019
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Nightingale Farms is building guest accommodations for an eco retreat. The Retreat at Nightingale Farms will host guests seeking to reconnect with nature in a holistic way in the Jamaica Blue Mountain. The Retreat will serve to fund the restoration of Nightingale Farms.
Who We Are
Nightingale Farms is a 6 acre abandoned coffee farm located in the Jamaica Blue Mountains. We are in the beginning stages of an agro ecological restoration to a fully diversified farm enterprise. We will use agroforestry and permaculture principles to regenerate degraded land on site. We believe that food can sustain health, economies, and the environment. Our focus is on improving livelihoods and the environment via agro ecotourism while providing consumers a deeper connection to where their coffee and food comes from. The Retreat at Nightingale Farms will provide a transformative experience for guests wishing to reconnect with nature. The farm and retreat is part of a long term conservation and research effort led by environmental conservationist Cheryl Bennett.
Nightingale Farms will serve as a model farm, research hub, and ecotourism destination for discovery and the integration of sustainable farming practices that are ecologically sound, ultimately creating a green economy via agro ecotourism.
From Jamaica to Brooklyn to Jamaica again
I come from a long line of farmers. My mom left Jamaica in search of better opportunities. Like most farmers who encounter hardships on the farm, my grandmother wished for a better life for my mother and that meant going to ‘merica. America proved to be a different kind of hardship and my mom eventually succumbed to cancer. My curiosity regarding her illness led me to pursue a degree in nutritional science. There I asked the question: how can food sustain health, livelihoods, and the environment? The trajectory of this question has led me to evaluate the true meaning of sustainable development in a participatory approach that is both ‘scientific’ and traditional.
In May 2019, I will graduate with a Master’s of Science in Environmental Policy and Sustainable Development from The New School. Deciding to go back home and farm, I bought a small abandoned farm that happened to have coffee on it in the world renowned Jamaica Blue Mountains. This was a returning to the land, a way to honor my ancestors.
I am the prodigal farmer. I took my history and my talents with me to undergrad at CUNY’s Brooklyn College and grad school at The New School. I’ve done a lot of research on environmental science. I am ready to return to Jamaica to put theory into practice!
The restoration of the farm will be the basis for creating a green economy through ecotourism and sustainable farming. The farm will also serve as a working model through the implementation of sustainable farming practices.
Building a cabin to fund the restoration
Begin farm design and layout
Planting trees ideal for conservation
The farm is completely off grid and we would like to keep it that way! We currently have a small solar energy kit but also exploring ways to incorporate hydrologic energy from the bordering stream. (See video below)
Join me on this journey of restoration as I transform a 6 acre plot of land in one of last rainforests in Jamaica. The Blue Mountain is a biological hotspot and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Let’s foster global stewardship because as simple as it sounds “this land (earth) is your land, this land is my land”. We all share it and hope to do so for generations to come!
Transforming lives and ecosystems one farm at a time
Other ways you can help:
Beyond giving, please help me get the word out to family, friends, and followers—share this campaign with as many people as you can! Follow the latest news on our website and instagram page. We also appreciate gifts in kind; please contact us for more information on items needed.