I know Paco from our involvement in the Zen Peacemakers. He has worked across the street from La Finca at a drug rehab agency for many years. After showing me the land, with plots that could provide vegetables for a community café, we met Nancy Ortiz-Surun, a Farmer/Educator/Coordinator from La Finca. Nancy is one of the founders and a driving force in preserving and developing the vision and mission of the FDS.
"La Finca del Sur" translates from Spanish as "Farm of the South". We chose this name to reflect the Latina/o heritage of many of our farmers, as well as many members of the South Bronx Community. In addition, we wanted to tie together our location in the South Bronx, with the heritage that many South Bronx residents tie to the Southern United States as well as the Global South. Founded in the late winter of 2009, La Finca del Sur was the brainchild of a number of individuals and organizations working in the South Bronx. These groups had a vision that an empty, unsightly lot on 138th Street could become a beautiful, community-led farm. With the guidance and support of MoreGardens!, a group of volunteers was mobilized, and La Finca del Sur was born.
In 2010, La Finca del Sur incorporated as a 501c3 nonprofit organization, whose goal is to address issues of food access, environmental justice, and community empowerment for women of color and their allies in the South Bronx - and to tie these issues to broader systemic inequalities and global justice.