Community Partners

rows of potted plants with a group of people in the background, inside a greenhouse

Our community partners consist of local and regional community gardens and other organizations that strive to practice the tenets of food sovereignty. We work together to create equitable, inclusive, diverse and just environments that respect the natural environment and build stonger communities. 

Coalition of Community Gardens

rooster and chicken

The Coalition of Community Gardens, Inc. is a network of community gardens and other allied entities formed to support community gardening, build infrastructure, share knowledge and resources, and advocate for related public policies.

For more information, visit Coalition of Community Gardens.

Florida Food Policy Council 

people facing greenhouse and apartments

The Florida Food Policy Council (FLFPC) works to address gaps and affect policy within the food system through integrity and collaboration for the benefit of all Floridians and the environment. We are a grassroots organization formed to act as a resource for residents and elected officials within the state of Florida on the topic of food policy.

For more information, visit Florida Food Policy Council.

Florida Organic Growers

green plant seedlings

Florida Certified Organic Growers and Consumers Inc. (FOG) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation established in 1987. FOG operates two programs: Education & Outreach and Quality Certification Services. FOG began as a grassroots organization, with the office located at various times in someone’s kitchen or an unused corner of a barn. The Organic Food Production Act of 1990 required that the USDA develop national standards for organic products, and FOG was heavily involved in the development of the National Organic Program regulations governing organics. The National Organic Program Final Rule was published in the Federal Register in 2000. FOG continues to be very active in policy, including continuing development of the NOP standards, food safety and genetically modified food. FOG is also active in developing and implementing Farm Bill programs.

For more information, visit Florida Organic Growers.

Office of Community Engagement and Partnership

Winnie Mulamba on top of St Pete mural

The Office of Community Engagement and Partnership (OCEP) exists to expand and strengthen university–community engagement* locally and globally in support of USF's strategic priorities to:

  • Change lives for the better, improve health, and foster sustainable development and positive societal change through high-impact research and innovation, including community-engaged scholarship and creative activities that benefit all members of society.
  • Produce well-educated and highly skilled global citizens through a continued commitment to student success, including enhancing opportunities for all students by providing transformational learning that develops relevant applied skills and engaged outcomes.
  • Create new partnerships to build a strong and sustainable future for Florida in the global economy by establishing mutually beneficial partnerships (internal and external) that enhance student access to academic programs, research, and employment opportunities.

For more information, visit the Office of Community Engagement and Partnerships.

 St. Pete Youth Farm 

colorful bus with blue wrap design

The St. Pete Youth Farm is a place where people can access locally grown produce, learn to grow their own food, and also provide programming to teens that would promote leadership skills, entrepreneurship, urban agriculture, and wellness.

For more information, visit the St. Pete Youth Farm.

Sweetwater Organic Farm

group of people at Sweetwater Farm

At Sweetwater we embrace the concept of Food Sovereignty through practicing what we preach. Sweetwater Organic Community Farm is a non-profit educational farm that also grows food for the community. Together we are growing, Sunday is volunteer day, the day the farm is open to all. With the gates open, Sweetwater is a conduit for knowledge to flow, both from gardeners to farmers and novice to experts. There is something we can learn from everyone and Sweetwater is one of many places helping to make it happen. We need more individuals connected to their food, both where it is coming from and who is growing it. I hope for active participation. Our community needs more small scale regenerative farms and local value added businesses, our goal is to facilitate that/ Land stewardship, everyone is responsible to leave the land better than we found it, we need to preserve our sacred spaces, thus saving the space for nature and potential future growers. Until we hit the tipping point, we all have a lot of work to do but our mission is one farm at a time, one farmer at a time, one farmers market at a time. 

For more information, visit Sweetwater Organic Community Farm.

Tampa Sierra Club

people walking in garden

Their mission is to enjoy, explore and protect the natural places in Florida, to teach others to understand and respect the fragile environment in which we live, and to practice and promote the responsible use of Florida’s ecosystems and resources. Their group aims to provide access, education and community support for citizens' concerns of the environment in the Tampa Bay area.

For more information, visit Tampa Sierra Club.

The Sustainable Living Project

red hen with people in background

The Sustainable Living project is comprised of a likeminded community dedicated to the advancement of green practices within Tampa Bay. We are keen to share our knowledge and experience to cultivate a more sustainable local community.

Our one acre plot of land is a hive of activity! We are home to 34 grow beds (10 of which are dedicated to veterans,) a water catchment patio with solar panel integration, 3 sheds, an aquaponics greenhouse, bee hives, compost stations, a chicken coop and much more.

For more information, visit the Sustainable Living Project.

USF Botanical Gardens

group from UFSG in a garden

The USF Botanical Gardens is part of the College of Arts and Sciences. It consists of about 16 acres of gardens and greenbelt on the USF Tampa campus. The Gardens maintains a living collection of more than 3,000 of plants, animals and natural habitats.

Attracting thousands of visitors annually, the gardens serve as an important outreach component of USF. Plant festivals and other events attract enthusiasts from around the state to shop for rare and unusual plants and learn about sustainable gardening.

For more information, visit USF Botanical Gardens.

Meacham Urban Farm

Meacham Farm tour

After three years of planning and construction, a green food oasis now sits in the middle of Tampa. Nestled between I-275 and downtown Tampa, Meacham Urban Farm is a high-yielding, bio-intensive farm accessible to the surrounding neighborhoods. Our goal is to inspire community engagement in the local food system, educate, and instill a commitment to organic, healthy, environmentally conscious farming. The foundation of this project is agriculture and food education for students, neighbors and any interested humans!

The Farm Store is now open and produce is available for purchase on the weekends. Read up on the “Latest News” and our vision for growing food at Meacham Urban Farm!

For more information, visit Meacham Urban Farm.