top of page

La Milpa Comunitaria

The La Milpa Comunitaria project is a family food justice project that sprouted from Irail Torres and María Hernandez through a leadership program at Growing Up NM.  The project began with a small garden and conversations with community members to talk about the problem of access to healthy food by the migrant community on the southside of the city of Santa Fe. The project has flourished into a larger program that includes the design and creation of the La Milpa Community Gardens at Earth Care’s offices in addition to Family Workshops that includes a group of families that come together to discuss topics related with the way our food habits have change due to the production and preparation of food and food justice. Through this project, we aim to be a part of and create alternative economies related to food, resilience, community self sufficiency.

Our purpose is to create a space where families come together and learn about growing food, where children and young people learn and share their cultural roots, and where we can cultivate not only the land but also human relationships and good habits.

Components of the Project

La Milpa Community Garden

La Milpa Workshops 

(for Spanish Speakers)

La Milpa offers free learning opportunities through Sunsets in la Milpa and free hands-on workshops in the Milpa garden. If you want to receive news about Sunsets in la Milpa, volunteer opportunities or special events, sign up here!

This is a program specially designed for Spanish-speaking families. Two training modules are taking place, the first module in the Spring and the second module in the Fall. The format of these workshops is very open and ideal for people with very little gardening experience. It also covers conversations about how our diets have changed since we were children, related to cultural, social, economic, and migration-related changes to the United States.

We also value traditional recipes and learn from each other about cooking and experimenting with new flavors. 

Spanish Speaking families can register for the Fall Module at the button below!

For more information or to get involved contact Mara Flores,

Meet the team!


Irail Anarely Torres Gonzalez

Originally from Cosío, Aguascalientes, Mexico. She studied Agriculture Technician and Educational Assistant. She loved her childhood because she grew up close to nature in the countryside and next to her family. She is the mother of 4 girls and a boy. She immigrated to the United States at the age of 21. She enjoys getting involved and supporting community organizations. She currently serves as the Program Coordinator of La Milpa Comunitaria together with Earth Care; She has a vision to connect and support families.


María Hernandez

She is the mother of two girls, she was born in San Antonio Aguas Calientes, an indigenous community in Guatemala where she grew up watching her parents and grandparents cultivate the Earth. In Guatemala she worked as a secretary for a school that supports children with limited resources for 8 years: she is a person who likes to serve and help. Through the Family Leadership Council of Growing Up NM, María remembered her roots and the importance of growing her own food and started the La Milpa Project with Irail. Maria wants to learn more to take care of her daughters and also share her knowledge with more people so that they too have a better life.

photo Mara.jpg

Mara Flores

She was born in Mexico and developed a career working with people in rural areas to protect their forests and other natural resources. Her passion for medicinal plant ecology has opened the door to connecting with a diversity of communities in Mexico and the US. Mara is passionate about exploring and cooking traditional recipes, learning the story behind the plants and ingredients that are used, and using stories to help people connect with themselves and with their ancestral power.


Analicia Guitrón

She was born and raised in Mexico. At the age of ten she migrated to the United States with her sisters and her mother. She studied Interior Design in California but never practiced because she dedicated herself to taking care of her children and then her grandchildren. In the end, she decided to study Aquaponics at Santa Fe Community College where she is currently still studying. Her love for plants and agriculture led her to join the La Milpa group, a group of incredible and intelligent women from whom she learns every day.


Mykayla Trujillo Hanawalt

With roots lying in much of Northern New Mexico, her connection to this land is intertwined with generations of farmers and many summers spent exposed to the magic within the fields. Mykayla has worked on a variety of agricultural farms in many regions, on ecological restoration crews in the PNW, and with environmental activist groups like the Southwest Environmental Center in southern NM. Her creativity and passion centers connecting communities back into the land and amplifying the knowledge Mother Earth holds for all of us to move through. 

She is currently attending Santa Fe Community College, completing the Controlled Environmental Agriculture program, and hopes to bridge a connection between holistic food security, community, and health in New Mexico with her adoration for the medicinal uses of plants and empowering families. Her role is as La Milpa’s project assistant.

UWNCNM_logo_horizontal-left copy.png
With generous support by
bottom of page