Focus on Youth is transforming the lives of thousands of homeless youth, using sustainable gardening and photography!

Since 2003, Focus on Youth has provided hands-on-learning, sustainable gardening, healthy cooking classes, science and photography classes and mentoring for over 16,000 at-risk and homeless youth. Hunger in Oregon has spiked 18% in the last two years, and one in five homeless youth report going hungry each week. 

Focus on Youth is fostering community building through our partnerships with nonprofits such as New Avenues for Youth, Outside In, Neighborhood House, Community Legacy Program of Our United Villages, Hands on Portland, Portland Service Program and hundreds of community volunteers.

Our program, Seeds of Hope is decreasing food insecurity and improving nutrition for homeless youth by teaching them where food comes from, how to grow food through hands-on activities, and the importance of eating fresh produce.

Our students grew over a ton of organic fruit and vegetables, plus they donated thousands of pounds of produce to low-income seniors through the Neighborhood House food pantry. Seeds of Hope connects youth with nature and the joy of growing their own food while giving them the ability to take on leadership roles within the community by donating food to help low-income seniors and families.

A special thank you to Energy 350 and for donating a polytunnel greenhouse and constructing it at Sunflower Farm so Focus on Youth students can grow food year round!

Don’t forget to support Focus on Youth this summer! Select Focus on Youth via Amazon Smile to turn a percentage of your purchases into a donation.

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Covid-19 is putting thousands more people in our  community at risk for food insecurity and as a result, making them vulnerable to malnutrition and serious illness.We believe no one should go hungry in the richest country on earth. We are working seven days a week, growing fresh, organic fruits and vegetables to provide thousands of meals for people who otherwise would go hungry. 

We are incredibly proud of the resilience we’ve shown over the past few challenging years. We are working tirelessly to expand our services and reduce food insecurity. We have exciting plans for the year ahead which include adding a commercial greenhouse to grow food year round!

We work in partnership with Outside In youth shelter, Neighborhood House and St.Vincent Food Pantry in Tigard and Positive Charge PDX to put food on the tables of our most vulnerable community members. 

Since the beginning of the pandemic, we have spread 224 tons of organic compost and tripled the size of our garden with the help of our volunteers!

We will be opening our flower stand 7 days-a-week as a fundraising effort! We sell small and large bouquets for $15 and $20, respectively. Our flower stand flyer provides additional details for those interested in purchasing bouquets. We’ve been able to raise essential funds to provide additional meals for homeless youth in our community!

Our amazing volunteers manning the flower stand!

We are excited to share that our dream of having a commercial greenhouse is coming true! This is possible because of a generous grant from Chiles Foundation and individual donors like you!  Thank you for helping end hunger and suffering in our community! 

To supplement the fresh produce we donate we have added a large flock of chickens enabling us to donate over 10,000 eggs over the coming year! 

Our greatest need is for volunteers to help in our garden. Sunflower Farm is conveniently located on a one acre parcel at 6001 SW Garden Home Road, Portland OR 97219.  If you would like to lend a hand with harvesting, planting, weeding or mulching garden pathways please fill out the volunteer form call/text 503-341-6878. We are open seven days a week and provide gloves and tools. No gardening experience is needed, we will teach you how to grow healthy, delicious organic fruit and vegetables. 

You can also help by donating on our website using PayPal or through the Givebutter platform, (givebutter.com/foy). Thank you!

 

Homeless youth participate in every aspect of the Seeds of Hope program, from building raised cedar garden beds, filling them with compost, planting seeds and seedlings, harvesting and cooking healthy meals on site. Using digital cameras our students capture the beauty of sunflowers, hummingbirds, colorful produce, garden ponds, dragon flies and the natural beauty of the surrounding wetlands.

 

You can sponsor a raised garden bed for a homeless youth!

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$100 provides a youth with 30 vegetable seedlings
$50 pays for lumber to build a 4′ x 8′ raised bed
$35 pays for frames and plastic to cover the bed during cold weather
Thank you for your tax deductible donation to Focus on Youth!

Join our team of wonderful volunteers!  

Call to volunteer (503)-341-6878

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Focus on Youth essay writer students capture the beauty of nature…….

Please like us on Facebook and our Instagram (@sunflowerfarmspdx). We have many more marvelous photos!