Sackville’s Open Sky Co-operative receives $20,000 grant

Tribune-Post Staff
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Left to right, Lesley Read, board member, Open Sky, Rev. Vernon Vickruck, board member, Open Sky), Tom Cormier, The Co-operators, Moncton, John Harvie, chair of the board of directors, The Co-operators, Eric Tusz-King, board member, Open Sky, Kathy Tapley-Milton, board member, Open Sky, and Laura Hunter, board member, Open Sky.

SACKVILLE, N.B – Sackville’s Open Sky Co-operative has been awarded a significant grant in support of its Roots of Resilience project.

The Co-operators Group presented $20,000 to Open Sky last week, with the funding to go towards the recruitment of six new participants for the farming and gardening program as well as provide ongoing support to previous participants seeking to improve their employment skills and obtain experience through volunteer work placements. This is the second $20,000 grant Open Sky has received from The Co-operators Community Economic Development Fund.

Open Sky Co-operative provides housing, skills-building and work assistance to adults who require support in order to improve their daily lives. It is based on an 11-acre farm with a five-bedroom farmhouse, allowing participants who benefit from household supports to reside at the house, or participants can join day programs while living in the community.

Programs for participants focus on gardening, farming, social skills and food preparation, all with the aim of teaching valuable life and employment skills.

Additionally, Open Sky offers public education workshops focused on the effects and causes of social and developmental health challenges

“This funding enables accessibility to our program and connects with the local community economic development priorities of local foods, new enterprises and collaboration,” said Margaret Tusz-King, executive director of Open Sky Co-operative.

“We are grateful for The Co-operators interest in improving economic and social prospects for people who experience barriers, particularly here in the Maritimes,” she added.

The Co-operators Community Economic Development Fund was established in 1995 to support programs and organizations that help disadvantaged people gain skills and move toward self-reliance. The fund is part of The Co-operators Foundation, which supports social enterprises, co-operatives, charitable organizations, and non-profits throughout Canada.

 

Organizations: The Co-operators Foundation, Sky Co, Community Economic Development Fund Roots

Geographic location: Canada

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