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We are getting a little provincial help in our attempts to grow!

Midland's Rosewood shelter gets provincial help for Operation Grow

The Ontario Ministry of the Status of Women has provided HTH, which operates La Maison Rosewood shelter in Midland, $430,000 for its Operation Grow project.

HTH has partnered with ZipGrow Canada to create a “vertical farm,” which allows produce to be grown on movable racks with minimal use of water.

The project will give employment opportunities to some of the women the shelter helps as well as providing fresh produce at a low cost.

According to Rosewood executive director Kathy Willis, Operation Grow has a threefold aim: breaking down social isolation, providing employment opportunities and reducing food insecurity.

“We’ve wanted to do a social enterprise like this for a long time,” she said. “We looked at several business opportunities and none of them quite fit. But this concept of growing food seems like a great idea.”

Operation Grow will occupy the former LCBO location at 436 Bay St., breathing new life into the long-dormant site.

Willis said she expects Operation Grow to be up and running by mid-July.

“It’s pretty exciting,” she said. “I think Operation Grow will do a lot of good in helping a lot of people in our community.”

Check out the article in the Midland Mirror by clicking here.

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Our newest program Operation Grow!

Huronia Transition Homes (HTH) is looking to grow. And that means more than just expanding its operations.

“We’ve wanted to do a social enterprise like this for a long time,” she said. “We looked at several business opportunities and none of them quite fit. But this concept of growing food seems like a great idea.”

HTH has partnered with ZipGrow Canada to create a ‘vertical farm’ at the facility, which allows produce to be grown on movable racks with minimal use of water.

“One of the big benefits of this technology is that it’s not like a greenhouse,” said Haily MacDonald, manager of community relations development at HTH. “It’s a fully controlled environment where you can stack and get the max yield of the product and make it sustainable.”

The goal is to see women using HTH’s facilities earn some money by working at growing and selling the produce.

“It helps to break down social isolation and give women an employment opportunity that does not involve a lot of commitment up front,” said Willis. “It’s about working in a supportive environment so they can build some confidence in their ability to get into employment again.”

The facility will also address food insecurity by giving people a place to buy affordable produce that is grown locally, said Willis.

“We’ll be able to supply the community with fresh greens and herbs,” she said. “It’s a really great opportunity for us.”

Operation Grow will eventually include other opportunities HTH has long wanted to deliver, including a community room, yoga studio and meditation hall, and a place to have a shower and do laundry.

“Operation Grow is about everything that the women we support have asked us for in the last 10 years coming together in one place,” said Willis. “They don’t just want therapeutic supports. They want a place where they can go and build relationships.”

Operation Grow will occupy the former LCBO location at 436 Bay St., breathing new life into the site.

Willis said she had hoped to have the facility fully operational by late spring or early summer. Despite receiving funding from the province and $1 million from the HTH board, the project is over budget and in need of community fundraising to get the doors open. Once that happens, Willis said, Operation Grow will be completely sustainable on its own.

“It’s our dream and it’s coming through now,” said Willis. “We’ve talked to a lot of people in the field and we’ve got a really great plan in place.”

To see the original article click here.

Positive Community Organization

Our organization was the recipient of the Positive Community Partner award at this year’s Pride Gala put on by Simcoe Pride. A huge thank you to our wonderful team, for all your hard work at continually breaking down barriers. Congratulations to all of the other award winners!

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Walk A Mile in Her Shoes

Join the Y’s Men club of Midland and Walk A Mile in a woman’s pair of shoes to raise money for La Maison Rosewood Shelter on Saturday June 25th at 10am. To Register please click here.

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