Grant will help fund the 'Learning Kitchen and Farmer's Market Training Program' at Carrfour's Verde Gardens housing community in Homestead, Fla.
MIAMI, FL – July 31, 2013 – Florida’s largest nonprofit affordable housing developer, Carrfour Supportive Housing, received a $28,800 grant from Health Foundation of South Florida to fund a Learning Kitchen and Farmer’s Market Training Program at their Verde Gardens housing community in Homestead, Florida. The program’s goal is to increase access to healthy foods among residents living at the Verde Gardens development as well as the surrounding Homestead community, through the creation of a healthy food hub consisting of a farmers market, urban farm and incubator kitchen.
Learning Kitchen trainees and staff will both operate the market and learning kitchen, as well as the market's organic food nursery, to sell to regional farmers, retail and specialty markets, and restaurants. Residents will be encouraged to assume ownership of the production, marketing, and distribution of their own food, herb and plant material generated on the farm.
Home to one of the most innovative supportive housing programs in the country, Verde Gardens – a $20 million partnership between the Miami-Dade County Homeless Trust and developer Carrfour Supportive Housing – is a supportive housing community for formerly homeless families and individuals with special needs. The community includes 145 townhomes and a 22-acre, on-site organic farm and public farmers market operated by the residents.
“Verde Gardens is making a life-changing impact in the lives of its residents, by providing them access to healthy, whole foods they would normally not be able to afford ,” said Stephanie Berman-Eisenberg, President & CEO of Carrfour Supportive Housing. “The new dollars granted by Health Foundation will help provide Verde Gardens with the resources necessary to teach our community about healthy eating habits and provide them with healthy food options.”
In addition to offering much-needed housing, Verde Gardens yields a positive community impact through its ecological farming component. The community’s farm – which is operated by Urban Oasis Project – provides residents the opportunity to work on the farm, develop microenterprises and staff the farmer’s market, which is open to the public every Saturday. For more information, please contact: Jacqueline Dana at 305-371-8300 or visit www.carrfour.org.
Health Foundation of South Florida, a nonprofit grant making organization, is dedicated to improving health in Broward, Miami-Dade and Monroe Counties. By funding providers and supporting programs to promote health and prevent disease, the Foundation makes a measurable and sustainable impact in the health of individuals and families. Since 1993, the Foundation has awarded more than $100 million in grants and program support. To learn more about the Health Foundation of South Florida, please visit www.hfsf.org.