Meet Our Team
For Land & People was founded in 2021 to reimagine and reinvent our world at a pivotal point in history.
The condition of every socioeconomic group in our society exposes the ill-kept secret that we are no longer working as a collective.
Too many people are broken. The middle class is falling apart under low wages and high debt. Increasing numbers of low-income people and youth in at-risk situations that are unsheltered and food insecure. Affluence does not protect people from addiction and physical and mental illness, which are at crisis levels.
Too much of our planet is damaged. Climate change is the number one threat to national security. Hunger, pollution, and public health issues disproportionately affect poorer communities, which are frequently the repository of toxic industry and systemic exploitation. We are a civilization in crisis.
It is time to invest consciously in evolutionary models that end systemic cycles of harm and trauma. How do we create the conditions for the widespread change that is desperately needed? We can’t change what we don’t acknowledge, therefore, we recognize the “stacked” nature of problems in order to find “stacked” solutions. For example, a homeless teen may also be dealing with abuse trauma, addiction, mental illness, and the impacts of systemic racism or discrimination. We can’t resolve one issue in isolation and expect things to get better. Instead, we invest attention, time, and space to gain long-term results. Our approach supports people in land-based, emotional healing so they can discover their own worth and independence.
For this work, we operate in a regenerative space, where everything has value and everything has a role to play. We acknowledge the interconnectedness of all life: that destroying the earth means destroying ourselves; that harming ourselves means harming the earth. We respect the needs and diversity of the individual while working toward the good of the collective. By connecting with and healing through the earth, we engender natural care and respect for the beauty of ecosystem restoration and management.
It’s hard to pinpoint the exact moment when Jennifer Kelly envisioned the nonprofit endeavor now known as For Land & People.
Was it as a little girl while playing on the sand at the beach or in the creek in the woods? Was it a few years later when she started to notice people being treated differently (and unjustly) due to skin color or circumstances? Was it when she became pregnant with her first son and found the physical and emotional benefits of yoga and wellness practices? Was it from fostering nine kids and learning to navigate various systems to meet their needs? Was it watching the increasing fracture and polarity among people of differing points of view, leading to increasing unrest and violence? Was it the onset of the Coronavirus pandemic that caused the world – and her business – to come to a standstill, and then witnessing the impact of systemic inequities play out in real-time with life-threatening consequences for communities of color? Or was it the racial reckoning that exploded in 2020 after the brutal murder of George Floyd?
Sowing New Seeds
All of those experiences and more sowed the seeds for a grand vision. But experience alone isn’t enough. Decades of studying, listening, teaching, serving, and creating have coalesced into a collaborative, multifaceted endeavor that Jennifer is now bringing to fruition. Her intuitive, energized plan for land acquisition, ecosystem restoration, regenerative farming, youth programming, and yoga and wellness classes is made possible by bringing together the necessary and diverse professionals.
We invite you to imagine a carbon negative, off grid farm on a beautiful location that offers trainings, mentoring programs, community events, and even housing. Imagine place where all are welcome and you can experience a warm family-style atmosphere with an outdoor kitchen/picnic area, a farmhouse, animals and barns, a learning/community center, and eventually dorms or tiny homes to house aging out foster youth. On the hillsides, we will be implementing alternative waste management solutions, water shedding/capturing/recycling systems and restoring the land while creating food forests, hiking trails and horseback riding trails. On the flat land we will have an event dome for yoga and nutrition classes, soundbaths, meditation, antiracism education, and more.
This Farm Educational Event Center provides the platform for breaking the cycle of disconnection and destruction for both humans and the earth. Our programming will create a comprehensive, land-based approach to trauma therapy, wellness, and education specifically focusing on youth in at-risk situations and foster youth. We know that barriers are broken when people come together for a common cause. We also know that land, water, and air quality are restored when we practice carbon sequestration and regenerative farming. Here young people and adults can benefit from innovative educational programs that teach the manual for life, restore the earth, and work in collaboration with other businesses and nonprofits to support people, regardless of socioeconomic status.
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