Project Hope Spokane
In a community once at risk of being left behind, Project Hope Spokane is building green pathways out of poverty through programs that provide social outlets, job training, skill building and entrepreneurial opportunities.
West Central Spokane is a low-income community that was being left behind. Residents recognized the need to address gang prevention with low-income at-risk youth in their neighborhood. As a result, they created Project Hope Spokane and launched several programs to provide social outlets, job training, skill building, and entrepreneurial opportunities. Kids needed alternatives and resources, so the community came together to teach youth how to grow local food, sustainably and organically.
The concept of “green pathways out of poverty” is central to Project Hope’s programs. Project Hope has several farm lots throughout the West Central neighborhood that make up their Riverfront Farm. Community members are empowered to grow and sell fresh fruits and vegetables through the West Central Marketplace. In 2013, Project Hope harvested over 2000 pounds of local food that was sold at local marketplaces and farmers markets. Project Hope also offers the West Central Lawn Care program, which provides opportunities for low-income residents and commercial properties. They beautified their neighborhoods by mowing over 200 lawns and restoring farm plots that were once overgrown littered fields.
Joel Williamson, board treasurer for Project Hope Spokane, says that, “CCHD believed in us enough to help us develop our organization.”