A Good Example

The Jan. 9 article on Lane County’s Poor Farm (“The Poor Among Us”) shows what we can do when a community comes together to provide opportunities for those without resources.

In 1990 the Santa Cruz, California, Citizens Committee for the Homeless established the Homeless Garden Project. In the 30 years since its inception, that project has provided unhoused people paid jobs growing organic vegetables as they learn horticultural and business skills.

Participants are also provided a range of support services so they can find permanent housing and stay on track after completing the program. The project has a farm stand, weekly produce delivery (CSA), women-run flower and herb business, and outreach programs for community involvement.

Their success is a model for Eugene. I hope Eugene Weekly reports on this organization to help inspire organizations such as Food for Lane County, Community Supported Shelters, St. Vincent de Paul and others to collaborate and create agricultural opportunities for unhoused people in the same spirit as those who created Lane County’s Poor Farm generations ago.

Allen Hancock