Fellow Irish Social Hub serves as fiscal sponsor for Green Bridge Growers as it finalizes its 501c3 designation.
We are delighted to see Green Bridge Growers being featured in so many fantastic articles. Check these out, and share them with your friends and family:
- The Atlantic: "An Organic Greenhouse Run by Farmers with Autism"
- Autism Speaks: "Jumpstarting Work for Our Young Adults"
Huffington Post: "Food As a Bridge to Jobs and Hope"
We are an urban farm with a difference! Green Bridge Growers creates empowering employment for highly-capable young adults with autism through an urban aquaponics farm. Our social venture will provide jobs for this under-served population while also producing an abundance of fresh, local produce for our community.
To make this amazing idea a reality we need to raise $15,000 in addition to our funds raised to date, which will allow us to scale up to our first commercial size facility. Your generous sponsorship will help to purchase our greenhouse and our aquaponics system to ensure our urban farm gets up and growing in the coming year. A successful campaign will create 5 incredible jobs for young adults with autism in the community, and will produce more than 45,000 lb of nutritious produce each year. Join us today and be part of the Green Bridge Growers story!
This is a venture with tremendous impact, so we'd like to aim high! We'd love to go far beyond our goal and raise $65,000, allowing us to expand to a second productive greenhouse much sooner and double our impact.
Green Bridge tackles several problems head-on. With first-hand experience of the difficulty of finding employment after college, Jan and her son Chris turned a problem into an opportunity: identifying the skills of those with autism and pairing them up with an entrepreneurial venture that simultaneously tackles the 90% unemployment of young adults on the autism spectrum, while helping to meet the demand for fresh, local produce.
A staggering 90% of all food consumed in Indiana is trucked in from out-of-state, a statistic that Green Bridge will help to change significantly.
Farming in the Midwest has also become heavily dependent on corn, compounding the situation, and traditional farming methods are extremely wasteful of water, a resource becoming ever-more scarce. We use the highly sustainable growing method, aquaponics, using 90% less water than traditional methods.
Our solution is simple: we provide employment to young adults with autism in an environment in which they can thrive. Those on the autism spectrum excel at tasks and duties that involve a high level of precision, continuous detailed monitoring and scheduling, which are all pivotal to the successful operation of a productive aquaponics farm.
So what is aquaponics? It's a highly sustainable, innovative growing method where fish and plants grow in harmony. Fish effluent is converted into the nutrients that the plants require for growth, and the plants in turn clean the water that is circulated back to the fish. This closed-loop system has many benefits, including four-season growth, reduced harvest time, and the consumption of 90% less water than traditional farming.
Green Bridge Growers grows herbs, lettuces and specialty greens, which will be sold to high-end restaurants, local grocers and at the farmers market. The demand for fresh, local produce has never been higher.
Green Bridge Growers will make an amazing difference in the lives of those with autism. By providing meaningful employment that embraces the assets of those with autism, we can empower an under-served population like never before.
Green Bridge Growers has made tremendous progress since we started just one year ago. We found our feet at our local Startup Weekend, and were incubated by the Fellow Irish Social Hub (FISH) at Innovation Park, striving to be a powerful force for good.
We garnered great success in Notre Dame's McCloskey Business Plan Competition, where we won the Klau Family Award for Greatest Social Impact.
Carrying this momentum, we built a prototype facility on the grounds of Hannah & Friends, a community that strives to improve the lives of those with special needs. Our dedicated team built this prototype from the ground up this summer, and now the fish and plants are flourishing. We've perfected our growing techniques here and have begun to train the future staff for the commercial facility that we aim to build with your help.
We're ready to expand and plan to build a 2000 square foot commercial facility. With your help we can make this a reality, and make a huge difference in the lives of those with autism. A successful campaign would see us breaking ground in the new year, creating 5 jobs and producing 45,000lb of produce per year.
Going above and beyond would be terrific, allowing us to expand further to our 2nd commercial facility much sooner than planned, and of course, doubling our impact!
None of this will be possible without your help. Join us today and be part of our mission to provide young adults with employment that celebrates their talents.
Help us reach our goal, and help us go even further. Support us in reaching our $15,000 goal, and be part of the Green Bridge Growers story!
Spreading our mission and our campaign will take no more than a few seconds, but the effect would be powerful. Share our story and give others the opportunity to contribute to the social impact of Green Bridge Growers.
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