This was a very worthwhile experience. To have the ability to meet with
colleagues not just different extension services (i.e., state, county, etc.) but to
understand their constraints, strengths, and weaknesses with regard to
community challenges, environmental challenges, funding challenges, etc.
will allot the Center to begin to form a more “global” view of extension, the Western Center’s work, and how to best collaborate with colleagues.
Urban agriculture in Columbus, Ohio is booming with a lot of community interest and support. The food system in Columbus is building in to what is common place in Colorado. Local food systems in Colorado are the norm, seeing very few fast food restaurants, yet, an abundance of “slow food” restaurants.
Both cities working toward the same goal, to build resilient, sustainable, local food systems, but coming from two very different schools of thought. The OSU Extension Franklin County is the standard for fact based resource information and education to the urban farm community simply because OSU Extension Franklin County was the key driving force behind urban agriculture in Columbus.
CSU Denver Extension is in quite a different position. With aged grass roots organizations that have been around for decades and with the inherent tradition of local foods in Colorado, CSU Denver, is one of many
working urban agriculture education.
There is a lot that can be shared, learned, and collaborated on between the two extension services in the future.