Farming 4 Hunger Nourishes Others
By Susan Nolan
Bernie Fowler Jr. believes in second chances—for others and for himself.
In 2008, his construction business was hit hard by the recession. He was going through a divorce. His daughter was struggling with a drug addiction. “Those were some dark days,” he recalls. Amid his sadness and frustration, Fowler found a purpose—feeding people.
In 2012, he founded his nonprofit organization Farming 4 Hunger at Serenity Farm in Charles County with a simple mission—to provide local food banks with farm fresh produce. “I saw people I recognized at the food banks,” he says, “I felt called to make a difference.”
In the past 10 years, however, Fowler’s calling has grown to serve the community in ways even he had not initially envisioned.
“Feeding the mind, body and soul are at the core of our mission,” he explains. “The four in Farming 4 Hunger stands for our four objectives: Food, community, youth outreach, and the work we do with justice-involved individuals.”
Getting the word out about all Farming 4 Hunger does can be a challenge. “People can see we are a farm and that we are growing food here,” says Fowler, “but we are so much more.” The organization provides hands-on educational opportunities for young people through their youth outreach program and workforce training for former inmates through a program aptly named Second Chances.
Giving the public a better understanding of all the work Farming 4 Hunger does is one of the goals of A Taste of the Farm, the Nov. 5 event featuring farm-to-table food prepared by local chefs from No Thyme to Cook, Dreamweaver Cafe, Caney Creek Catering/Bulrushes Cafe, and Brick. Live music will be provided by FLyT featuring Ryan Forrester and John Luskey. All proceeds go to Farming 4 Hunger.
A Taste of the Farm is Nov. 5, 5-8pm, at 6932 Serenity Farm Rd., Benedict, $75, RSVP: farming4hunger.org.