Partnerships For The Goal of Sustainability
No man (or urban farm) is an island. This is why partnerships for the goal of sustainability is mission critical here at Mezzacello. Every part of Mezzacello is a result of partnerships with an extraordinary range of partners.
I always try to come at the balance of partnership from the perspective of the Mind, Body, Spirit. I see the world through the foci of both of these, the physical systems and partnerships and the spiritual systems and partnerships. It takes a village to really change the world.
Humanity over Hubris
Any person who will seek to build alone or even worse take credit for their successes without acknowledgement is contrary to sustainability. We do not believe that one person can do it all. We also need to be more willing to seek the help and more importantly, the opportunity to share and partner.
This is the final blog in this series. It is also the most powerful and impacting of the sustainable development goals at Mezzacello. Everything builds to this, so let me end with gratitude and call out some of the great partners at Mezzacello.
Partnerships for the Goal
In 2020 Mezzacello received a grant from the Ohio Farm Bureau Foundation to start building out what was then called Project BioLEGO. The spirit of that grant and its’ deliverables were the very embodiment of UN SDG 17: Partnerships For The Goal of Sustainability. Mezzacello was to become an active learning lab and center for innovation for all community gardens and education institutions that interact with the BioLEGO model.
Mezzacello Urban Farm is a program of The PAST Foundation, a fantastic and engaging partner for sure. In addition to being my fabulous day job, PAST is a terrific and inspiring partner. They support my dream to become a sustainability model and tirelessly offer me design thinking and Applied STEM opportunities to grow that dream.
The Columbus Foundation and Franklin Park Conservatory has been another terrific pair of partners for my goal and dream of sustainability. From grants, to data, to networks, and materials so much of the successes we have had is due to them. I say “we” because the we we are talking about is hundreds of kids neighbors.
The Scotts Miracle Gro company is another important partner to our sustainability mission here at Mezzacello Urban Farm. Their kind and valuable donations of materials and aid literally saved Project Martian when the ecosystem started to collapse. The martian soil needed mineral-based soils and Scotts had that in spades.
I want to combine the Scotts Company and Franklin Park Conservatory in this paragraph as well. The Scotts Community Garden at Franklin Park was a HUGE influence on our decision to start this farm and how we could make it work. We had a model and we adapted here to aggressively pursue sustainability.
The City of Columbus and the City of Columbus Public Health Department have been huge influences and partners for Mezzacello Urban Farm. My city has been a great partner in planning and building this mission out. I know that seems counter-intuitive, but they both have supported our mission with guidance and funding and we are very grateful.
A special call out to Columbus Public Health Office of Animals and Permitting and Dr. Aaron Messer for his great guidance and encouragement. I owe a lot of this vision to him and his office and they are a great partner. Also City Council Member Priscilla Tyson for tirelessly supporting Urban Agriculture development in the city her entire tenure on the council.
Bronzeville Agricademy is another great partner for Mezzacello. This innovative and passionate group allow me to interact with such a wide diversity of citizens, groups and neighborhoods. Partnerships can also be mentors, and Bronzeville Agricademy and the Bronzeville Growers Market is definitely a mentor.
Many thanks to the Innovation World team and the Global Innovation Field Trip for consistently allowing me to share my passion with children and thinkers all around the planet. It has shaped my reactions to the UN 17 SDG challenge in so many ways. Mostly because I get to regularly interact with and be inspired by young innovators all around the world.
Columbus CEO for its’ innovative #Future50 program. This program was an honor to be a part of the 2022 cohort. As part of this cohort I met amazing people, worked on amazing program that extended my sustainability model to our entire city.
I will thank the United Nations for creating the structure of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals. All of them have influenced our work here on this urban farm. My innovation here is to apply them locally and intentionally.
And lastly a big thank you to my favorite and most constant partner, Richard. He allows me to be the mad scientist, social butterfly, inventor, farmer, and alpha animal at our farm. He loves me, feeds me, keeps me from killing myself and is the best gardener and animal daddy an urban farm could hope for.
That’s a wrap, Partners!
Thank you all of you and the 1000s of people that make this life so fascinating. Here’s to you, neighbors, friends, campers, sponsors, donors, and readers. Here’s to the partners that together will help me change the world.