Published Mar 4, 2021

Community-Engaged Seed Keeping of the African Diaspora – 2021 Virtual Annual Conference

By Practical Farmers of Iowa


To develop an African focus for the core purpose of Sankofa Community Farm at Bartram’s Garden, co-directors Chris Bolden-Newsome and Ty Holmberg have engaged in many conversations with the community gardeners, student interns and local leaders. That farm is committed to living the praxis of Sankofa, a West African concept that teaches we must go back to our roots in order to move forward. Through this constant “remembering,” individuals are nourished by active engagement with the shared African-American narratives in America. Part of this engagement is a community practice of seed keeping. During this session, Ty shares their process and experiences with community engagement, and discusses ways white people can meaningfully engage with communities of color on agricultural topics.

  • Ty Holmberg is co-director at Sankofa Community Farm at Bartram’s Garden in Philadelphia. Ty has had extensive experience in youth development, food justice and education reform. He served for 10 years with the University of Pennsylvania’s Center for Community Partnerships as director of health promotion, and was director of the West Philadelphia-based Sayre Community School.