Friend of Tivoli Lake Preserve and Farm, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to supporting Tivoli Lake Preserve.
We have a community farm located in Tivoli Lake Preserve where we care for a flock of animals that bring regenerative land maintenance practices to Tivoli Lake Preserve.
We use an intensive rotational grazing system where sheep are used to control invasive species populations and improve soil health.
The farm was initially motivated by the City’s vision to employ livestock for the purposes of controlling populations of invasive vegetation, but also provides an opportunity for facilitating community agriculture and environmental justice.
The broader goal is to improve the Preserve for enjoyment by residents of the surrounding West Hill and Arbor Hill neighborhoods, where opportunities for enjoyment of an undeveloped environment are otherwise rare.
We provide an outlet for environmental education through our community garden, composting program, fiber and educational workshops.
We encourage outdoor recreation by hosting plant walks, bird walks, trail maintenance and other events to bring people to the Preserve.
Our invasive species grazing project is funded through a DEC grant awarded to the City of Albany for improvements within the Tivoli Nature Preserve. This is part of a larger initiative associated with Albany 2030 that aims to revitalize the underused green space in downtown Albany.
We strive to create a welcoming and safe space for individuals of all walks of life to participate in our organization and community events.
With this in mind, we have created Group Agreements. These are a living and evolving set of principles co-created by our community, staff and volunteers.
As a community organization it is important that every volunteer feels they have a voice and that there is space to exercise that voice.
Our volunteer meetings are sociocratically-governed. This decision-making method creates an open and warm environment that equally allows all community members to be engaged.
We strive for consensus decision making, with deference to the wisdom of project leads and majority rule when consensus is not reached.