In partnership with the GR Center for Community Transformation, Urban Roots is a YouthCorps site. We offer a youth employment and education program which teaches life skills, urban sustainability, food justice and professional development through the practice of urban agriculture.

YouthCorps members are employed on the community farm on Madison Ave in Grand Rapids’ Southtown neighborhood, building soft farming skills, learning day-to-day operations, and engaging with members of the community through growing, selling, eating, and cooking together. Students learn critical skills in team building, professionalism, community engagement, and social entrepreneurship.


While working on the community farm, YouthCorps Members have the opportunity to learn about the challenges of creating sustainable, healthy, and vibrant communities within our city. In addition to gaining valuable employment skills, YouthCorps Members are able to access a wide variety of additional support services through our partners at the Center for Community Transformation (CFCT). The CFCT, a program of Bethany Christian Services, and is engaged in community transformation through the creation of meaningful work, relationships and education for young people.