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Growers Establish Foundation To Help Farmworkers With Child Care, Health Care and Education
Date:3/24/2009

MAITLAND, Fla., March 24 /PRNewswire/ -- Florida farmers have launched a new foundation to benefit farmworkers, announcing today an initial round of $160,000 in funding for three programs related to child care, health care and education for the farmworker community in South Florida.

For its inaugural projects, the Farmworker Community Support Foundation has chosen to work with Collier Health Services and the Redlands Christian Migrant Association, both in Immokalee, and with Homestead-based Women United in Justice, Education & Reform (MUJER).

"The grower community has a long history of supporting farmworkers in a variety of ways. Through the Farmworker Community Support Foundation, we can direct our outreach in additional targeted ways. We're very enthusiastic about the projects that we've selected and are excited to be working with some very strong community groups," said Orlando attorney Brad Hester, chairman of the FCSF board. "We look forward to helping many more farmworker organizations and projects in the years to come." FCSF has raised more than $300,000 from Florida tomato growers so far.

The foundation is awarding $30,000 to CHS Healthcare to fund dental care for more than 500 pregnant women. Research shows a direct link between poor dental hygiene and premature births. With the much-needed funds, CHS will be able to provide a basic dental exam, teeth cleaning and problem resolution as part of its program directed at farmworker mothers and their children.

"CHS Healthcare is pleased to be working with the Farmworker Community Support Foundation to enhance the health of the migrant and seasonal farm workers in Eastern Collier County," said Mike Ellis, director of community development for the agency.

The FCSF also will grant the Redlands Christian Migrant Association a total of $100,000, with a $50,000 challenge grant dedicated to t
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SOURCE Farmworker Community Support Foundation
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