By Wakisha Bailey

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — As the city struggles to end an epidemic of violence, money is available to nonprofits and organizations that can help. CBS3 reporter Wakisha Bailey explains how those organizations can get funds.

A blossoming farm in the middle of Philadelphia’s concrete jungle is doing more than just growing fruits, vegetables, and flowers.

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“It is an oasis,” said Federation on Neighborhood Centers Executive Director Jerry Tapley. “This is a neighborhood that’s got high crime. It’s got a high poverty rate. And it needed an oasis.”

It’s an oasis they now call the Community Learning Center at 8th and Poplar. Executive director Jerry Tapley runs the Federation on Neighborhood Centers, and when he’s not at headquarters, this farm is his second home.

“We’re able to usually move out four or five tons of food every season,” Tapley said.

From vegetables to flowers to fresh ideas, it’s all planted by our youth. It’s a program to help them escape the violence just outside of the garden, but it does come at a cost.

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“This farm gets several foundation grants every year and that’s what keeps us going. Many of those grants we’ve gotten for many years in a row,” Tapley said.

In Philadelphia, there are dozens of grants available. The amounts range from $20,000 to $600,000.

Libby Hikind has created the website GrantWatch. It watches out for available grants. She recommends forming a coalition to go after bigger dollars.

“Bring everybody together to a roundtable, where then it’s a decision of who is going to take the lead,” Hikind said. “It’s not just one grant, because one grant is not going to do it.”

Back on the farm, Tapley says he wants to extend a helping hand to the next group that’s looking out for future generations.

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If you would like to experience the Community Learning Farm, they are hosting a farmers market every Wednesday from 4 pm to 6 pm. That’s going to be ongoing until at least November.

Wakisha Bailey