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December 31

Homeless Garden Project

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Organization Mission

The Homeless Garden Project is an urban farm and garden 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:
Expanded Social Enterprises

We are taking the organic farm workers to the next level by teaching people to create more than 30 value-added products from the organic farm, including flower wreaths, beeswax candles, salves, lavender shortbread and more. The HGP needs funds to scale up its production of these goods and to purchase workshop materials, including containers, locally-sourced beeswax and organic ingredients for baking mixes.

This project is a social enterprise aspect of our transitional employment program that helps individuals experiencing homelessness build job skills.

I am but one of countless individuals whose life has been monumentally transformed by the power of the Garden. Whole families have transitioned out of homelessness into stable, secure homes. People like myself, who came from the worst of the worst, have found safety, empowerment and self-worth.

— Kathleen Groves, Santa Cruz, 19