June 6, 2022

Partnership Supports Refugee Community, Combats Food Insecurity Near Transit 

ATLANTA – The Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority (MARTA) is partnering with the Global Growers Network to establish a farm near Indian Creek rail station in DeKalb County. Produce from the farm will be available at MARTA Markets, which expanded into DeKalb County this year at Kensington and Doraville rail stations.

The farm at Indian Creek will host a group of local farmers known as Umurima, a name that pays homage to their home country of Burundi. Since 2010, the Umurima farmers have grown fresh food for their families and local markets on private land near Avondale rail station with support from Global Growers, an organization known for its network of farms and gardens that facilitate land access for new Americans. The group of women take MARTA to and from their homes in Clarkston and Stone Mountain to tend to their garden.  

“When we heard about this farm being uprooted and that those who tend to it are MARTA riders, we knew we wanted to help,” said MARTA Interim General Manager and CEO Collie Greenwood. “Indian Creek Station is located in an area identified as food insecure by the USDA and this partnership with Global Growers Network will support these refugee families and food equity in the surrounding communities.”

“At Global Growers, we work to uplift the extensive agricultural expertise of growers who face barriers to accessing farmland and agricultural resources,” said Robin Chanin, executive director and co-founder with Global Growers. “This agreement with MARTA allows smallholder farmers like the Umurima growers to play a leading role in addressing fresh food access.”

Launched in 2015, MARTA Markets provide convenient access to affordable, fresh produce in food deserts and expand opportunities for Georgia’s local growers to sell their fruits and vegetables. MARTA operates the markets in partnership with Community Farmers Markets (CFM), with support from Open Hand Atlanta, Wholesome Wave GA, Urban Recipe, and local growers. 

The markets operate on Tuesdays at West End Station, Wednesdays at H.E. Holmes and Bankhead Stations, Thursdays at College Park and Doraville Stations, and Fridays at Five Points Station. The market at Kensington opens this summer. 

The markets accept cash, credit and debit, as well as Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). SNAP is doubled at the market, meaning $5 swiped is worth $10 to spend. The Atlanta Community Food Bank screens individuals and families to see if they are eligible for benefits. Visit benefits@acfb.org or call 678-553-5917 to see if you qualify.



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