West Central Initiative

A nonprofit organization

When farmer Simeon Bakunda arrived in Moorhead from the Congo in the middle of a snowy November, he wondered how he was going to feed himself. He went to a local market and found a vegetable with a familiar shape. He bought it, harvested its seed, and planted them in a community garden. Eight years later, the seeds from that original vegetable have grown into what is now known locally as Simeon’s Eggplant. And it's grown in community gardens all over the Fargo-Moorhead area.

With your help, we can feed our region and support more producers like Simeon.

Who We Are

When Minnesota faced a farming crisis that threatened to break the economic backbone of our region, we went to work—empowering our neighbors to overcome barriers to meaningful work and to wellbeing. Thirty-five years later, strengthening our region through philanthropy and planning remains our reason for being. 

With your help, we can make sure our neighbors across the region enjoy great quality of life, meaningful work, and access to essential services and basic needs. 

What We Do

Through philanthropy and planning, we fuel insight and action for the benefit of our region and our world. Along the way, we understand our progress through the United Nations 17 Sustainable Development Goals. One of these goals is Zero Hunger, and we’re committed to advancing this goal for the people of Becker, Clay, Douglas, Grant, Otter Tail, Pope, Stevens, Traverse, and Wilkin Counties and White Earth Nation. 

Will you help us to eliminate hunger in west central Minnesota?

What's Next

We know local access to healthy foods is an economic priority for our region. And we believe generosity and empowerment are gifts that keep on giving. That’s why we want to plant a pair of apple trees in each of the 82 communities we serve for Give to the Max this year. 

As part of our Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy, our stakeholders asked us to improve access to healthy foods over the next five years. Now we’re committed to supporting local food initiatives and encouraging self-sufficient food production. 

Will you make a gift to plant a tree in your favorite west central Minnesota community? 

We'll use every dollar above and beyond our goal to address more food-related challenges identified by our communities.

A vibrant, inclusive, and sustainable world starts here in west central Minnesota. Donors like you help to make it possible.

Organization Data


Organization name

West Central Initiative

other names

West Central Initiative Foundation

Tax id (EIN)



Children & Family Community Economic Development


PO Box 318
Fergus Falls, MN 56538-0318



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