A Working Farm
As an innovative social enterprise program, Benevolence Farm is home to a working farm. Located on 13 acres in southern Alamance County, approximately 3 of these acres are appropriate for sustainable vegetable and small fruit production near the main farmhouse, with potential for an additional acre for orchard fruits on the western edge of the property. Current plans through 2019 include up to 1 additional acre in small fruit production and up to 2 acres in annual vegetable production. A 985 sq. ft. pole barn was designed and constructed by NC State University’s School of Architecture Summer Design/Build Program and will function as a pack house for post-harvest handling and cold storage for produce. A 288 sq. ft. pole shed shelters the tractor and implements and a 432 sq. ft. quonset-style propagation greenhouse is adjacent to this structure.
Residents work about 16 hours per week throughout the year in supportive and supervisory roles in the day-to-day operations of the farm, including areas of crop production, marketing, business and labor management that have value as transferable skills for future employment. Goods produced on the farm include vegetables, fruits and mushrooms and are sold through direct-to-consumer retail and wholesale markets.
In July 2014, North Carolina State University’s School of Architecture Summer Design/Build Program joined hands with Benevolence Farm to design and build a pole barn. The simple wood framed structure was designed to maximize natural light, provide a generous covered work area, tool, dry produce and climate controlled cool storage. The open plan enables multiple work, gathering, and community uses. As the inaugural new structure on the recently acquired land, Benevolence Farm envisioned an iconic and spiritually uplifting building that would capture the essence of rural North Carolina vernacular architecture. The completed project is beautifully detailed, expansive, airy, comfortable, and inviting. Benevolence Farm and NC State look forward to many years of work, play, growth, and nourishment in the Benevolence Barn.
Thank you to our donors for making this project happen!
Tim Ing, Tanya Jisa in honor of Allison Jisa Lopez and in honor of Abigail Jisa Lopez, Rosie Kwan, Ann Merzbacher, Woody Clore, Christene Tashjian, Allen Wood, Betsy Fenhagen, Dave Allen & Heather Bixler, John Collins, Randall Lanou, Gary Giles, Andrea Winkler, Yvonne Ng in honor of Eugen Merzbacher and in honor of George YP Lee, Alicia Rivero, Carolyn Ikenberry, Matthew Arnsberger & Piedmont Environmental, Ellen Braznell Green, Gretchen Aylsworth, Hendree Jones & Erik Lensch in honor of Irma Kirtadze and in honor of UNC Horizons/Lensch Family, Brittany & Conner Sandefur, Karla Smith, Justine Wayne, Greg & Linda Smith, Philip Semanchuck in honor of Alice Semanchuck, Nicole Quallen & Peter Nordberg, Jennifer Williams & Evan Rogers, Tracy Bethel, Jacquelyn McLaughlin, Mary Jisa, Anonymous, Anonymous, Anonymous, Susan Sharpe & Nancy Duffner, Keith & Suzanne Miller, Karen Hayes, Stephen Jenks, Darla Locklear, Hannah Damman, Jerald A. Purifoy, Jernice McAdoo Purifoy, Brett Blyler
EXTRA special thanks to Yvonne Ng, Gary Giles, and Liz Clore.