Growing a Sustainable City

How are urban farms the answer to growing a sustainable city?  

Urban farms are providing solutions to a myriad of urban ills.  Such as blighted vacant lots, food insecurity, stormwater runoff, and declining neighborhoods.  Over 50% of the world's population live in cities. Our city dwellers are having increased difficulty accessing fresh healthy foods, bringing high rates of malnutrition and obesity.  With that comes increased health disparities. Including increased rates of diabetes, heart disease, and cancers.

Well, none of that stuff sounds great to us so at Chihuahuan Desert Charities.  More so, we find them motivating reasons for a change. Urban farms cut down on the significant amount of fossil fuel consumption necessary to transport, package, and sell food by localizing. The average meal has traveled thousands of miles just to get to your table. Urban agriculture helps consumers reduce their “footprint” by providing opportunities to purchase food that was grown within their community.  There is no denying that it creates healthy and delicious meals, bringing our communities together with our common interest --- food. The small-scale, local markets provide the opportunity for farmers to foster more unique varieties of produce, cultivating biodiversity.

Not only could urban agriculture account for several percents of global food production, but there are added co-benefits beyond that, and beyond the social impacts,” said Matei Georgescu, a professor of geographical sciences and urban planning at Arizona State University.

Issues of food security and nutrition are full of implications for people and their environments, particularly for the low and middle-income.  Urban agriculture offers the solution. We’re losing our farmers and we’re not creating more as we crack under the pressure of our unsustainable agricultural system.  Chihuahuan Desert Charities is ready for a change. Will you join us?

Why we should be urban farming

My advice for people interested in sustainable agriculture is just plug in…wherever you are, connect to your local food community.  Connect to your local food non-profits, go to farmers markets, meet the farmers, and just talk to people…this is the best way to figure out where your passion is and where you fit best!”

Dorsey Barger, Farmer Hausbar Farm, Austin, TX

The DYGUP & SUSTAIN Program is a non-profit dedicated to regenerative organic agricultural practices to teach the benefits of land stewardship in the Paso del Norte Region. DYGUP, an acronym for Developing Youth from the Ground Up, is available to youth ages 14-17. The SUSTAIN program targets adults over 18 and combines "Roots Of Success" Environmental Literacy Curriculum with intensive farmer training. The DYGUP/ Sustain Program has many partnerships in the community including Taylor Hood Farms, Backyard  Farms LC, First Christian Church, and Las Cruces High-School. Chihuahuan Desert Charities is proud to be the fiscal sponsor for DYGUP & Sustain and support their important work in the Las Cruces community.

Support the DYGUP & Sustain Program at Legacy Farm in Las Cruces by visiting