Thank you for your contribution to help overcome obstacles to healthy, fresh food for everyone!

Your donation helps to provide education, purchase garden tools, double the purchase power of SNAP dollars, and get info about these resources to those who need them most. Thanks for cultivating a healthy Fargo-Moorhead community!

Our Mission

The  mission of Prarie Roots Community Fund is to assure everyone in our community has access to healthy, fresh, local food. We focus on cultivating healthy futures for families with low-income.


Work with the neighborhood to develop and promote community gardening.


Develop programming to help families make the most of their resources to afford and enjoy natural food centered meals.


Fundraise and advocate to assure persons with limited incomes can access quality food and shop at Prairie Roots (WIC, SNAP).


The mission of Prairie Roots Food Co-op is to build a healthy community by providing access to natural, organic and local food. With that in mind, we created Prairie Roots Community Fund, a 501c3 nonprofit organization committed to bringing access to high-quality, delicious food to everyone in our community. The Community Fund is overseen by the same Board of Directors as the Co-op. The meetings are at 8:00 pm on the first Monday of every month, directly after the Co-op board meetings. Please join us! Prairie Roots Community Fund has partnered with the AmeriCorps VISTA program to bring three Volunteers in Service to America (VISTA’s) on board to work on our three focus areas of Gardening/Outreach, Education and Development. We’ve asked our VISTA’s to place their initial focus for program development with our neighbors to the west in Golden Ridge.

Jen Walla, Garden/Outreach VISTA

Jen is a Fargo native. She completed a Sustainable Food Production diploma program at M State-Fergus Falls in 2013 and has been a volunteer with Growing Together Community Gardens since she returned to Fargo-Moorhead in 2015. Jen loves acting as a community liaison, cultivating mutually beneficial connections around the community. Bicycle is her preferred year-round transportation.

Jen has been involved in the local food movement for over a decade and is enthusiastic about foraging locally for food and medicinal plants. Much of her excitement about local food and community stems from her dad’s fruit tree expertise, her mom’s dedication to teaching and her grandparents’ beautiful gardens. Her son joins much of her VISTA work, continuing the family tradition of growing delicious food.

Jen is focused on Gardening and Outreach. She has been forging connections with Growing Together Community Gardens and other gardening resources and has been developing partnerships to break ground on a new community garden in Spring 2019.

Naquela Pack, Education VISTA

Naquela is finishing her Master of Public Administration degree while serving as PRCF’s Education VISTA. Before arriving in Fargo in early 2018, she was heavily involved in her community in Wichita, KS. In Wichita, Naquela most recently worked in the Release and Reentry Department at the state prison, coordinating a mentoring program to reduce recidivism for men released in Kansas. She also helped a community-based program to empower at-risk youth. Building community and bridging service gaps has been a constant theme in Naquela’s career path. At Wichita State University, Naquela was part of a research team involved with asset mapping to assist with building community capacity and make community network connections.

Naquela has been cultivating partnerships with local nutritionists, wellness programs, and colleges. Classes about planning meals and making the most of food-buying dollars, managing diabetes & high blood pressure, cooking healthy meals and more will be happening soon. Naquela is eager to share her skills, knowledge and abilities with Prairie Roots Community Fund and to serve to cultivate access to healthy futures for all!

Barbara Villella, Development VISTA

Barbara attended and graduated from Fargo Public Schools. The majority of Barbara’s childhood summers were spent with her grandmother and large extended family in the Twin Cities. Her family moved to Fargo when she was just a few years old.

Growing up in a large family, many stories of struggle and the ability to overcome the toughest of obstacles were passed down, and Barbara remembered them as she experienced domestic violence and food insecurity herself. Over the years, Barbara has used her various platforms to cultivate relationships that address needs in our community. This community focus and her role on the opening leadership team for the Co-op are why her current role as PRCF’s Development VISTA is important to her. This role will utilize her experiences with local media, performing arts, preschool teaching, ND PTA (Reflections Chair) Board, and Fargo Public Library Board to cultivate more tools to overcome barriers to healthy futures. Improving access to resources, including healthy local foods for all, is a passion of hers. As they say in her family, Mangia! (Let’s eat!) She hopes to develop the necessary systemic changes to ensure that hunger and food insecurities around ND no longer exist. She is a proud momma of a college-attending daughter who often volunteers time to help with the Community Fund.

Barbara keeps track of the budget for the community fund and develops partnerships with organizations that can support us financially or with in-kind donations of products or time. She has worked hard to develop and grow Prairie Roots Food Co-op’s Double SNAP program and is advocating and working on legislation to bring more fresh/local/ natural options into the WIC program so that Prairie Roots can participate in that important food access program.

Tim Mathern, VISTA Supervisor

Prairie Roots Co-op and Fund Board President, Tim Mathern, volunteers as the AmeriCorps Supervisor. He initiated this VISTA program and meets with the three VISTA’s regularly to advise and support. He brings experience as a community leader advocating for building healthy futures for all persons.

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If you would like to participate in classes (as a teacher or a learner), gardens, fundraising, helping plan or anything else, please contact us!

For more information about AmeriCorps and the VISTA program, visit their webpage.

Copyright © 2017 Prairie Roots Food Co-op. All rights reserved.