Tuesday, December 6, 2011

The Seed Library of Los Angeles Turns One Year Old!

Many of the original Board of Directors braved the cold.
It was probably one of the coldest days of December 2010.  About 35 people met at 1:00 on the patio of The Learning Garden at Venice High School.  By the time we'd all said hello and established the purpose of the meeting, we had dwindled down to about 20 people (and by the time all was said and done, we were even fewer).  

Those that stayed that December 4th agreed to create a thing called the Seed Library of Los Angeles and began to form the organization to save and store seeds for loaning out to members.  The members agreed to grow them out to preserve the genetic integrity of the seeds and subscribed to the Safe Seed Pledge.  Then a portion of the harvested seeds would be returned to the seed bank for future gardeners to check out.  We settled on a lifetime membership fee of $10, making it affordable to everyone. Most of us there that paid our $10 and SLOLA was on its way! 

As I write this now, the Seed Library of Los Angeles (SLOLA) has about 250 members with about 280 varieties of seeds available to loan.  We have a web page (slola.org) and email addresses for our officers.  We have won the South Bay Business Environmental Coalition's SEED Award for Preservation of Natural Resources.  We have sent speakers all over the Greater Los Angeles area to speak on saving seeds - not just how, but why.  We have at least four good qualified speakers available and we've sent them to Covina and Orange County to speak about the world of seed saving.  At our November meeting, we voted in a basic bylaws  - in this upcoming, December meeting, we will elect our first officers under those bylaws. 
We have had a heady first year.  But this is just the beginning.  With the lofty goals we have put our sights on, we have much to do.  The first thing to do will be to find officers to serve for the coming year.  We need more organization, more bylaws and more of that work that makes an organization viable.  Our next meeting will be December 17th.  Please take a few minutes out of your holiday schedule to come on down and lend your hand to our plow.  

It's not only important work - it's exciting work.  It's work knowing you are making a tangible difference and fighting the spectre of all seeds being GMO or all commercially available seed being owned by just a few multi-national corporations.  

Come, be a part of the legacy of 'those who fought back!'

Inaugural Chair

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