1. ACCESS TO THE POPULATION
Smile Farms is looking for a non-profit organization that serves people with developmental disabilities who are interested in partnering with us to create paid work opportunities. Our intent is to employ individuals aging out of their traditional educational programs - typically at age 21+. Ultimately, our goal is to close the gap between education & employment!
Examples of potential partners include BUT are not limited to:
Group Homes, Vocational & Educational Programs, Young Adult/Adult Service Providers.
PLEASE NOTE: There is much to consider when starting a new nonprofit. Before creating a 501(c)3, we recommend scoping out your neighborhood for established organizations looking to serve the same population.
2. A VIABLE SPACE
Along with having the population we're looking to employ, our potential partner must also have a viable space to create a farm operation.
Examples of viable spaces include BUT are not limited to:
Farm Land, Urban Gardens, A Greenhouse(s), Garden Beds
Ultimately, our partner will be the decision maker in terms of what to grow and produce at the farm (e.g. vegetables, herbs, annuals, perennials, etc.)
PLEASE NOTE: A large plot of land is great, but an efficient farm operation is even better!
3. a SUPPORT SYSTEM
Last but certainly not least, Smile Farms needs a STRONG team to work with. The ideal team will consist of support staff and/or job coaches for the adults with developmental disabilities and a staff to oversee the day-to-day operations of the farm.
PLEASE NOTE: The support staff will be responsible for determining the number of hours each Smile Farms employee is able to work. Typically, our employees' schedule should allow them to participate in vocational activities and NOT adversely affect their Medicaid benefits.