Farms Work Wonders is a non-profit umbrella organization with a vision to create an agrarian focused community based around a sustainable, organic farm that elevates local food as an economic driver.
To financially sustain the project long-term, our goal is to launch connected income-producing social enterprises (market, bakery, restaurant, production kitchen) which also serve as living classrooms providing unique opportunities to gain real-life experience for local Appalachian youth.
The social enterprise model allows us to address historically negative economic development in Appalachia—which often only created profits for outside companies—by operating like mini-businesses, harnessing the power of market demand to generate income while creating positive impact locally.
WE MEASURE OUR SUCCESS BY OUR LOCAL IMPACTS THROUGH:
Creating educational and economic opportunities
Protecting the natural environment
Reinvesting 100% of proceeds locally
OUR FIRST PROJECT
In mid-2016, we launched our first farm-based enterprise, the Wardensville Garden Market, on the historic 100-acre Frye farm, with the hopes of creating a small onsite farm market connected to a one-acre garden that would create ten new jobs locally.
Today, the farm has a bustling produce market and from-scratch bakery and employs 70+ people, with over 50+ of them local high-school students. In 2019, the market and bakery doubled sales from the previous year and recorded over 16,781 customer transactions. The project has also been recognized as Best Charity statewide, Best Regional Bakery, and Best Bakery statewide (runner up) by WV Living Magazine.
OUR LIVING CLASSROOMS
The farm allows us to teach healthy eating habits, organic farming methods, land conservation, biodiversity of crops, soil management, food handling and storage, irrigation, organic pest management, crop rotation, seasonal veggie subscriptions (CSAs), indoor growing and harvest for wholesale, and much more.
The market allows us to teach customer service, hospitality, retail sales and operations, stocking, inventory, display, food handling and safety, restaurant management, along with marketing and working with other farm products, and much more.
The bakery allows us to teach cooking and baking, culinary skills, food preparation, food handling and safety, pricing strategies, product development, wholesale production, kitchen and equipment management, supplies and inventory management, planning, order fulfillment, and much more.
PRESIDENT AND EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
DANIA DE LA VEGA