Hidden Villa

Hidden Villa's mission is to inspire a just and sustainable future through our programs, land and legacy. As part of Hidden Villa's commitment to social justice, we provide over $350,000 on scholarship and partnership support. Guiding Principles We deliver a wide variety of relevant educational experiences that teach respect for the environment and for each other. We encourage program participation from diverse communities. We engage diverse voices of the community in the design, implementation, delivery, and evaluation of programs and services. We build alliances, internally and externally, between people, programs, and diverse communities to optimize resources and deepen our impact. W...
Apr 7, 2014

Spring is in the Air

Roxy, Agriculture Intern, Tills In Cover Crops
Roxy, Agriculture Intern, Tills In Cover Crops

We are gearing up for our growing season here at Hidden Villa and are excited to continue our partnership with the Community Services Agency of Mountain View, providing them with consistent deliveries of fresh fruits and vegetables throughout the summer months. In a November 2013 Los Altos Town Crier article, a CSA of Mountain View client said, "Food is very expensive, so the healthful food that they provide is something I appreciate a lot. It’s really helpful – vegetables, rice, beans, things like that,” he said. “It’s the vegetables I value most.” We are proud to continue this partnership and provide healthy, local, fresh food to our neighbors in the community.

As many of you are aware we are experience a very serious drought throughout California. At Hidden Villa our farm operation uses a shallow well for all of our agricultural water supply. This year we have received 12.5 inches of rain, counting the rain that fell just hours ago. We're hoping that the rain continues to strengthen up our cover crops, an important aspect of organic farming that helps replenish the soil with sufficient amounts of nitrogen. As we continue to prepare for this coming season we see this as an opportunity for you to join us and the Community Services Agency of Mountain View in weathering this drought, together.

We are incredibly grateful for your support and hope that you will rally with us and our farm!

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Feb 10, 2014

Preparing for a New Season

Youth Interacting with Hidden Villa Chickens
Youth Interacting with Hidden Villa Chickens

The Youth Development department at Hidden Villa kicked off the year with a bang. We hosted our first ever Volunteer Training where seven volunteers joined us to learn about how they can be supportive chaperones, especially for our multi-day retreats. We’ve also been busy attending conferences and workshops, gaining skills and perspective along the way. This work and preparation has paid off as we start a new season of learning and growing with Bay Area youth.

Most recently we visited a Redwood City high school to meet the students from an AP Biology class that will come for an environmental program at the beginning of February. We did a short program for four classes, one after the other. The students seemed to deeply enjoy meeting some of our hens and participating in one of our environmental activities. When students saw an egg in the chickens’ cage, one asked me, “Is it alive?” We talked about that as a class.

Taking the class outside, Jay led an activity in which students simulated the process for retrieving water from their original sources. One group transported water from the Hetch Hetchy Reservoir to a Bay Area tap. The other groups, the Southern Sierras and the Colorado River, delivered water to Los Angeles. “That was fun!” they said at the end of the activity. We talked about water as a precious resource and all of the work that goes into transferring it from the source to our homes. We are looking forward to seeing these students soon to explore water and land as resources with them while we have some fun.

If you’d like more updates on Youth Development at Hidden Villa check out our blog where we’ll be posting information about programs and impactful experiences.

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Jan 25, 2014

New Summer Camp Programs for Kids and Teens!

Friendship, Respect for Nature, and Fun!
Friendship, Respect for Nature, and Fun!

Summer Camp registration began last week, which means we’re gearing up for our 69th year of Hidden Villa summer camps. Each summer, campers of diverse ethnicities, economic status, religions, and family structures come together to enjoy a wide range of exciting activities, farm life and wilderness exploration. In the midst of song-singing and game-playing, something profound takes place at camp. Young people learn what it means to live in community. They develop greater multicultural understanding and appreciation, resolve conflicts peacefully, cultivate independence, and overcome personal challenges. Lifelong friendships begin here, and campers take with them a new sense of awe for natural beauty.

This year we are excited to offer a wider variety of camp options for young people. Kinder Camp, offered for children ages 4-5, will explore and discover Hidden Villa’s farm and surrounding natural beauty. From the garden to the barn, from the pasture to the kitchen, campers will play and learn in a small group setting. This is a great, hands-on learning opportunity for the young and curious.

Another new offering for summer 2014 is our Sierra Backpacking Trip. During this trip backpackers will join the Alpines of the Americas Project to hike in Yosemite National Park. After spending the first two days at Hidden Villa, the group will spend 15 days exploring San Francisco’s water source; starting at Hetch Hetchy Reservoir, hiking into Tuolumne Meadows, and ending in Yosemite Valley! Along the way the group will transform into citizen scientists to recreate historic photos, volunteer with the National Park Service, and return to the farm with memories that last a lifetime.

We are excited to meet our campers this summer, new and old, who will be stewards of our natural environment and help us create a just and sustainable future.

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