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Community Based Services Cultivates Dreams In Poughkeepsie

The Community Based Services program Cultivating Dreams, which grows vegetables and plants, has become so successful that participants can't wait for the snow to thaw to get back to planting.
The Community Based Services program Cultivating Dreams, which grows vegetables and plants, has become so successful that participants can't wait for the snow to thaw to get back to planting. Photo Credit: Community Based Services

POUGHKEEPSIE, N.Y. -- Community Based Services (CBS), which offers individuals with autism and other developmental disabilities residential and community-based opportunities, made a dream come true in 2015 when it secured the use of a small plot of Poughkeepsie farmland for a new program.

Since that time, the program, CBS' Cultivating Dreams, which focuses on providing agriculturally based vocational training opportunities for their clients, has grown into a full-time project with 10 participants and a lot of plants and chemical-free vegetables. In fact, the gardening program has been so successful that the center has already sold all of their slots to residents who will purchase the vegetables at a cost of $300 for 12-weeks beginning in May.

CBS also was able to develop volunteer opportunities with several area organizations the Dutchess Outreach, the Food Bank of Hudson Valley, and a local senior center.

"Participants enjoyed being a valued part of their community, and were thrilled to donate some of their produce to those in need," Betty Rivadeneira, director of Day Programs. "Our future holds much promise."

Now the group is waiting for the snow to thaw so they can get to the garden and begin cultivating their dreams again.

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