ELIJA has launched its first capital campaign aimed at supporting a bold new mission: to create a sustainable future for our transitioning adults with autism. In December 2016, we entered Phase I of this campaign by purchasing 6-acres of a local farm-- Our Farm. Your sustained help is still needed as ELIJA will now establish a community supported agriculture (CSA) program, where students and adults with autism will play a daily role in the productivity of the farm.
The ELIJA Farm CSA is one of the most beautiful farms on Long Island -- located on two adjacent parcels in South Huntington totaling 10 acres of rich farmland.
Phase II of the campaign will include acquisition of the second 4-acre parcel, construction of a state-of-the-art greenhouse and conversion of the property’s barn into a classroom and workspace.
With the success of phases I and II, ELIJA’s long term plan is to develop a creative residential option for individuals with autism to live in a safe and supported community.
Watercolor by Susan Gaber
The ELIJA CSA will create a sustainable future for our transitioning adults with autism
ELIJA CSA is a sustainable, non-profit farm committed to using environmentally responsible practices to raise high quality, organically grown produce. The ELIJA CSA is dedicated to enriching the health and wellness of our community by providing an innovative community supported agriculture (CSA) program that offers dynamic learning opportunities to its diverse membership.
ELIJA Farm is a ten-acre farm on the beautiful North Shore of Long Island. With rich soil and responsible growing practices, we provide an abundance of fresh vegetables, herbs, and flowers to dozens of local families and organizations.
The success of ELIJA's capital campaign depends on financial contributions from individuals, families and businesses in our community. People like you.
As a first step of our long-range plan, farmers/educators from South Huntington’s Fox Hollow Farm, Larry Foglia, Heather Forest and Dylan Licopoli, came together to build a school garden at ELIJA. The garden serves as venue for us to pilot the ELIJA CSA Our students have begun to learn all aspects of garden management, sharing their experiences with their teachers, families and community. The school garden was made possible by a generous grant from Autism Speaks,The Long Island Community Agriculture Network and the Horace and Amy Hagedorn Fund.
Our famers and our learners have been working hard every day caring for the beautiful seedlings that are blossoming into a healthy amount of food for our community. We have already had several bountiful harvests where our learners delivered a variety of organic vegetables to over 30 members of our pilot CSA.
Special education experts Debora Thivierge and Randy Horowitz founded ELIJA Farm as a non-profit project in 2016. The land had been owned and farmed by the Foglia family for more than 50 fruitful years. Farmers and educators Larry Foglia and Heather Forest were in search of new stewards of their fields. With a shared passion for sustainable agriculture and experiential learning, Deb and Randy collaborated with Larry and Heather to evolve the vision of the farm’s Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program. ELIJA Farm’s unique CSA model offers programmatic opportunities for diverse populations and integrates members into the life and community of the farm. Larry and Heather serve as the farm’s primary agricultural consultants. With a skilled and dedicated farm team and support staff, ELIJA Farm raises more than 100 different varieties of organically grown vegetables for its CSA members, farmers’ market, and local community.
The ELIJA Foundation is a 501 C 3 not-for-profit charitable organization #03-0416348
For more information on this project and how you can support our mission please contact Randy Horowitz at 516-216-5270 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
DEBORA THIVIERGE email@example.com
Debora received her BA in Sociology from Hofstra University and is a Board Certified Assistant Behavior Analyst. She serves as the Executive Director and Founder of The ELIJA School and Founder of The ELIJA Foundation. Debora has volunteered her time to numerous Autism groups such as Nassau County’s Department of Health Early Intervention Coordinating Council, New York State Association of Behavior Analysis, Nassau County Autism Coalition run by the County Executive and for the last 5 years served as a board member of The Behavior Analyst Certification Board® (BACB®). Recently, she was appointed to the New York State Licensure Board for Applied Behavior Analysis. For the past 15 years, she has been providing advocacy to families and conducted training workshops to promote evidence based instruction for families and educators who have been touched by Autism. She has a 17 year old son with Autism.
RANDY HOROWITZ firstname.lastname@example.org
Randy Horowitz started her career as a special education teacher in public school in Nassau County and then spent close to 20 years in a senior leadership position at a nonprofit organization serving children and adults with autism in NYC and Long Island. Randy has a Master of Science in Education from Queens College and a Certificate of School Administration and Supervision from the College of New Rochelle. Randy is currently a doctoral candidate in the educational leadership program at Concordia University. Randy is an adjunct Professor in the schools of education at Queens College, CUNY and SUNY Old Westbury. Randy has presented at local, national and international conferences on topics relating to educating students with autism. Her particular areas of interest include preparing and supporting students with autism for integration into school and community activities. Her dissertation research focuses on the impact exercise has on individuals with autism and their families, and she hopes to defend her dissertation early next year.
Kelly joined the ELIJA School in 2009. Kelly has a Bachelor’s Degree in communication disorders and linguistics from the University of Connecticut and a Master’s Degree in special education with a specialization in autism from St. Joseph’s University. Kelly is currently lead clinical instructor in the ELIJA school clinic and will transition to the adult program in July, 2016. In her free time, Kelly enjoys playing the piano and running.
Dani joined the ELIJA School in July 2012. Dani has a Bachelor’s of Arts from the University at Buffalo and has dual masters in Early Childhood Special Education from Hofstra University. She also is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst and has an Advanced Certificate in Applied Behavior Analysis from Queens College. Dani is currently a clinical supervisor in the ELIJA School and will hold the same title when she transitions to the adult program in July, 2016. In her free time, Dani enjoys going to the beach, and spending time with her friends and family.
Larry is a second-generation farmer whose energy is only out-matched by his generosity. Larry oversaw all of the construction work at Gateway Garden, designing ingenious construction methods for the raised beds, managing volunteer workers and coordinating with Huntington Town’s landscape architect and general service manager on the garden design, drainage problems, etc.
Larry is dedicated to promoting gardening and farming and preserving farmland on Long Island. In addition to his work on Gateway, Larry is also: Project Supervisor for the Nassau and Peconic Land Trusts; an Executive Committee member of the Long Island Nature Collaborative for Kids Early Years Institute Project; Advisor to Sustainable Long Island’s Food Equity Project; and manager of a nature awareness and restoration program at the USDAN Center for the Creative and Performing Arts.
He is also working tirelessly to save threatened Long Island farms, including Ship’s Hole farm on the Nissequogue River; the Tilden and Carpenter Farms in Greenlawn; the Marion Carll Farm in Commack; and, under the North Shore Land Alliances’ Small Farm Initiative, the Grossman Farm in Malverne and the Rueck Farm in Old Westbury.
He and his wife, Heather Forest, run Fox Hollow Farm in South Huntington where more than two acres are devoted to growing fresh vegetables for donation to Long Island Cares and to support a vegetable and egg CSA. He is also on the board of the Story Arts Foundation, which is directed by Heather. Heather is an internationally known story-teller.
In addition to running Fox Hollow Farm, Dr. Forest holds a Master’s Degree in Storytelling from East Tennessee State University and a Ph.D. in Leadership and Change from Antioch University. She is founder and Executive Director of Story Arts, a cultural arts organization in Huntington, New York, U.S.A. that presents storytelling concerts and workshops in schools, theatres, and community centers in the Long Island, New York area.
Home Organic Gardening Service (HOGS for short) has designed and installed more than 200 gardens, composting systems, hoop houses, and water management systems on Long Island. Dylan has over 25 years’ experience in the construction and landscaping industries, including expert tree surgeon and organic gardening certifications. He also hold an Interdisciplinary Bachelor’s degree from SUNY Oneonta, and a 200-hour Hatha Yoga Teaching Certification. Most recently, he earned Master Gardener certification through Cornell Cooperative Extension, as well as Permaculture Design certification through the Punta Mona Center for Sustainable Living and Education, el Caribe Sur, Costa Rica.
contact Randy@elija.org for further information about naming opportunities
Thank you to all of our amazing founding families and supporters for making ELIJA's vision a reality
- Hung-Farinelli Family
- Koufakis Family
- Havens Family
- Harris Famiy
- Thivierge Family
- Hung-Farinelli Family
- Koufakis Family
- Galatan-Stone Family
- Giberstein Family
- Havens Family
- Harris Family
- Thivierge Family
- Randy Horowitz (Race Track Naming)
- Robyn and Allan Schneider
- Ory and Mirella Giberstein
Jeffrey and Simone Giberstein (Wishing Well Naming)
Donor lising $25-$999
- Jason Harris
- Randi Rothberg
- Calandra Family (Rock Garden Naming)