Updated: Dec 3, 2020
First of all, what is the Homeless garden project? The Homeless Garden Project is a non-profit organization in Santa Cruz, CA that helps homeless people get their life back on track. They give job training's to homeless people while they help in the gardens. They will train them, help them get jobs, housing and knowledge. They run fully on volunteers. They get about 3,000 volunteers each year that help. You can volunteer there now in the gardens. Everything that they grow or make they sell at their store downtown.
Here is their website: https://homelessgardenproject.org/
Follow them on Instagram at: @homelessgardenproject
We also have a paragraph about them on the Links & organizations page: https://www.togetherwehelpthem.com/links-organizations
So, I interviewed an employee at the homeless garden project to learn more about what they do.
What are some ways you can help homelessness?
Finding an organization that provides help for people going through homelessness and volunteering there is a great way to help. Even if it is just something small, you can still help. Or even just making a social media post or blog entries to raise awareness and tell people about the organizations that are helping.
What has the homeless garden project done the most to help?
"What we have done here the best is help create a community, and not only for the trainees and the staff, but also for the volunteers as well and that has really helped break down the barriers of homelessness, and it also creates a support system for everyone and makes you feel like you are loved and cared for"
Why do you think homelessness is a big issue?
I don't think there are many systems in place for those who have lost their jobs or there is no support for anyone for what they are going through. I don't think that there is enough government or state support for people that have addictions or need a lot of help.
What does the Homeless Garden Project do to help homelessness?
We have a trainee program, up to 20 people a year for people who are experiencing homelessness or are at risk of homelessness, go through this one-year program and learn job skills; they work on our farm and workshop to learn skills there. They also work in our shop to learn job skills there. At the end, we have helped them get stable income and stable housing. We have a really high success rate, about 92% of everyone that goes through this gets income and housing.
What are the jobs that people who go through this program get most often?
The top three jobs in Santa Cruz are retail, food service and hospitality's. These are the jobs that people mostly get when they go through the program. We define success as getting stable income and housing, but the person might define it as getting a family, or a job, or even moving away and going to live elsewhere.
The Homeless Garden Project is an amazing non-profit that does so much for people who are experiencing homelessness, I was very excited to interview and employee and learning more about what they do. As I said up above, you can find them on our website or down below:
Have a great day! Always remember, YOU can help...