Community Engagement & Advocacy

Harvesting the Power of Community

World Grace Project is blessed by the diverse, beautiful, hardworking community we serve. Their contributions to Waterloo inspired and continue to grow the project every day. Since 2010, the census reveals that the white population is in decline in Waterloo, only to be replaced by minority populations, numbering over 10 thousand in 10 years.

Why does the World Grace Project embrace the platform of food for advocacy? Because

  • Forty percent of the resettled refugees from Myanmar worked in Agriculture before coming to America.
  • In 2019, almost 57 percent of crop production workers were immigrants.
  • Iowa holds the fourth spot for the number of workers in meatpacking, under Georgia, Arkansas, and Nebraska.
  • Economic Policy Institute shows that nearly 40% of meat processing center workers are foreign-born.

Not only do our hard-working refugees and immigrant community bring food to the table, but they also understand the power of community and gathering around the table, setting the stage for the power of community found in the World Grace Project.

The Life Garden hydroponic project is inspired by the talented agricultural workers we see in our community. In addition, it brings the ability to grow cultural food year-round. Teachers use the gardens as a project in the Waterloo Schools. The gardens also provide community engagement at the Sportsplex, Waterloo Center for the Arts, and the Library, reminding us that our minority communities power our agriculture sector and bring economic vitality.

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