About This Project
In the Choctaw language, "Nan Awaya" means a "Place of Growth". It refers to the location in present-day Mississippi, where, according to Choctaw origins stories, God created the Choctaw people from the earth. We call our farm "Nan Awaya Heritage Farmstead" out of respect for our Choctaw ancestors' connection with the land, and in the hope that this farm can be a place of learning and growth for us as well as for our community.
Over 15,000 years, the Choctaw ancestors built a series of civilizations within their homeland, developing an advanced understanding of the interplay between ecosystems, sustainable food, and human health. The knowledge for living locally, healthfully, and sustainably is built into Choctaw traditional culture.
The Nan Awaya Heritage Farmstead is an effort to adapt Choctaw traditional knowledge to the realities and challenges of the 21st century. We have four primary goals: to restore the productivity of the land, to produce healthy food, to support our community, and to bring back to light important aspects of Indigenous Choctaw culture.
The purpose of this website is to raise awareness and hopefully to build dialogue around this project. By candidly detailing some of the ups and downs on our journey, we hope to make the road a little smoother for people who may be interested in doing something similar.