New garden program will create jobs, provide workforce training
By Elise Schmelzer
The Denver Post
January 6, 2019
Community leaders in north Denver neighborhoods are looking to the dirt for solutions as rents begin to rise and gentrification continues to creep into working-class streets.
As more residents consider leaving or are kicked out of their rented homes, one local nonprofit hopes to use new grant money from the state to help the neighborhoods’ families grow sturdy roots — literally and figuratively.
The $100,000 Colorado Department of Human Services grant awarded to Focus Points Family Resource Center will fund a year of planning for future community gardens in the Elyria-Swansea and Globeville neighborhoods. The gardens will create flexible jobs with a living wage, prepare participants for careers in agriculture or to launch their own food businesses, and provide classes on nutrition for parents and children alike. The nonprofit has until July to plan for the launch.
Focus Points leaders hope the program, Huerta Urbana, will help participants earn enough money to stay in their homes, keep them off public assistance and address the neighborhood’s lack of healthy food.
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