Great Kids Farm is situated on 33 acres of fields and forest in Catonsville that were originally developed by the Episcopal Reverend George Bragg in 1912 as a foster home and school for disadvantaged African American boys. The property was purchased by Baltimore City Public Schools (City Schools) in the 1950s and utilized as a school and nature center. By the late 1900s, the property was no longer needed as a school, but continued to be owned by the School System.
In 2008, as part of a major school food reform initiative, the Bragg property was identified as a potential site for a farm. A group of committed City Schools employees and community volunteers repaired the greenhouses, cultivated the fields, planted fruit trees, and renovated the buildings. Great Kids Farm (GKF) was born. The working farm and education center now serve thousands of City Schools students each year through field trips, educational events, YouthWorks programs, support for school gardens, and produce for school cafeterias and culinary programs. Today, four Farm to School Specialists and one Farm Operations Specialist, employees of City Schools Food & Nutrition Services manage programs and operations at GKF.
Community volunteers involved in establishing GKF formed a not-for-profit foundation to promote and raise money for Farm programming in 2011. Friends of Great Kids Farm has raised more than $1 million for GKF to date. Current funding needs include student transportation to and from the farm, as well as ongoing support and program enhancements.
Click HERE for a Five Minute History video of Great Kids Farm by Baltimore Heritage.