PhillyEarth won $1000 at Stake #7

PhillyEarth Cob Pizza Oven

1. Describe the project a STAKE Grant would help you accomplish (100 words):
The STAKE grant will help PhillyEarth build an outdoor pizza oven, constructed of cob, for our youth-run urban farm. Part of our Master Plan, the oven will serve as an additional element in our educational Permaculture farm, which already boasts an edible food forest, culinary and medicinal herb garden, vegetable farm and a living willow fence all artistically designed with inspiration from Arabic mosaics. This January, a new middle school, Hope Partnership will move next to the PhillyEarth farm. The 40 middle school students, their families and PhillyEarth students will have access to the pizza oven for educational workshops.

2. How will you use the grant toward the realization of your project? $800 is your imaginary budget (50 words):
$800 will cover the oven’s material costs and will allow us to hire an expert in the field of natural building to host the series of workshops for community residents and local youth constructing the pizza oven.

3. A little about yourself and what led you to your current creative goals. This may include a previous project of yours, ways it both succeeded and failed (this can be entirely unrelated to your proposal) (100 words):
PhillyEarth is a Center for Environmental Education incubated by The Village of Arts and Humanities. As part of our ethos, we planted a living willow fence around our farm to both define the space and to exemplify an alternative to traditional fence materials. The living willow fence has a zero carbon footprint, where as traditional fence materials typically have a substantial carbon footprint when you factor in things like extraction, production and shipping of these materials. As an added note, the living willow fence is beautiful, unique and will outlast any traditional fence material.

4. Why is this project important? How will it benefit the community? (100 words):
In addition to being introduced to a form of construction using inexpensive, natural, and readily available materials, the pizza oven will be used as a fun and exciting tool for teaching cooking and nutrition classes to teens. One common challenge of urban farms is that the neighbors often don’t know how to cook the produce, or have time to prepare it. These students will participate in the entire process of growing food from seed to farm stand and will acquire new skills in making value-added food from the kale, tomatoes, basil,and other vegetables that they harvest.