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December 31

Homeless Garden Project

Homeless Garden Project

Organization Mission

The Homeless Garden Project is an organic urban farm that provides job training, transitional employment, and support services to people who are homeless. With an emphasis on creating a thriving and inclusive community, as well as growing the local food system, the project provides people with the tools they need to build a home in the world.

The Homeless Garden Project also supports the broader Santa Cruz community with a Community Supported Agriculture program (CSA), and an education and volunteer program that blends formal, experiential, and service-learning.

The Big Idea:
From Homelessness to a Job and a Home: Transition Support

Santa Cruz County has the fourth largest homeless population by county in the U.S. In order to support graduate retention of jobs and address transition challenges (into job and housing), our request to Santa Cruz Gives is to create a part-time staff position of a Social Work Supervisor. This is needed to increase the impact of our work and provide support for individuals experiencing homelessness during the program and after they graduate. This position would conduct assessments of incoming trainees, supervise our social work intern program, and create plans with trainees to address stability and employment readiness.

Our innovative program is rooted on tending to the land to produce healthy nutritious food without negatively impacting the environment.

I feel reborn! I feel so alive and eager for the changes that my new life will bring. Learning new things everyday makes me feel important. The Homeless Garden Project has made me feel so deeply happy and worthy.

Georgie Linderholm, Santa Cruz, 2017 graduate, now employed by New Leaf Markets with stable housing.