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Nuestras Raices Inc

 329 Main Street
 Holyoke, MA 01040
[P] (413) 5351789 x 7
[F] (413) 5351100
www.nuestras-raices.org
[email protected]
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INCORPORATED: 1992
 Printable Profile (Summary / Full)
EIN 04-3182556

LAST UPDATED: 09/17/2015
Organization DBA --
Former Names --
Organization received a competitive grant from the Boston Foundation in the past five years Yes

Summary

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Mission StatementMORE »

Nuestras Raices (Our Roots), Inc. is a non-profit grassroots organization that promotes economic human and community development in Holyoke through urban agriculture. Nuestras Raices draws its membership and leadership from the hundred and fifty low-income families and individuals that participate in its network of community gardens, businesses and coalitions. The organization was incorporated in 1993 in order to manage the LaFinquita community garden and to develop a greenhouse in downtown Holyoke. Nuestras Raices involves community members in all stages of planning, implementation and evaluation of its projects. The majority members of the board of directors of Nuestras Raices are current or former participants in the projects of the organization. All Nuestras Raices staff members are bilingual and the majority reside in the area affected by the organization's projects.

Mission Statement

Nuestras Raices (Our Roots), Inc. is a non-profit grassroots organization that promotes economic human and community development in Holyoke through urban agriculture. Nuestras Raices draws its membership and leadership from the hundred and fifty low-income families and individuals that participate in its network of community gardens, businesses and coalitions. The organization was incorporated in 1993 in order to manage the LaFinquita community garden and to develop a greenhouse in downtown Holyoke. Nuestras Raices involves community members in all stages of planning, implementation and evaluation of its projects. The majority members of the board of directors of Nuestras Raices are current or former participants in the projects of the organization. All Nuestras Raices staff members are bilingual and the majority reside in the area affected by the organization's projects.

FinancialsMORE »

Fiscal Year Feb 01, 2012 to Jan 31, 2013
Projected Income $724,647.00
Projected Expense $706,744.00

ProgramsMORE »

  • --
  • Environmental Justice Program
  • La Finca/Farm Program
  • Youth Programs and Policy

Revenue vs. Expense ($000s)

Expense Breakdown 2012 (%)

Expense Breakdown 2011 (%)

Expense Breakdown 2010 (%)

For more details regarding the organization's financial information, select the financial tab and review available comments.


Overview

Mission Statement

Nuestras Raices (Our Roots), Inc. is a non-profit grassroots organization that promotes economic human and community development in Holyoke through urban agriculture. Nuestras Raices draws its membership and leadership from the hundred and fifty low-income families and individuals that participate in its network of community gardens, businesses and coalitions. The organization was incorporated in 1993 in order to manage the LaFinquita community garden and to develop a greenhouse in downtown Holyoke. Nuestras Raices involves community members in all stages of planning, implementation and evaluation of its projects. The majority members of the board of directors of Nuestras Raices are current or former participants in the projects of the organization. All Nuestras Raices staff members are bilingual and the majority reside in the area affected by the organization's projects.

Background Statement

Founded in 1992 by the members of La Finquita community garden, Nuestras Raíces has grown into a 501(c) 3 organization with programs serving the broader community. With over 19 years of community experience and expansion into new opportunities, Nuestras Raíces has grown into a well established farmer training, community development, environmental and cultural organization, responding to the needs and ideas of the low-income, primarily Latino community members of inner-city Holyoke, Massachusetts. Our current projects include:Community Gardens: 9 community gardens and 2 youth gardens with 120 families and 90 youth participants;Nuestras Raíces Farm/La Finca: 30-acre urban farm offering beginning farmer training, managing 3 farmers’ markets and farm store, Paso Fino horse barn, Lechonera Puerto Rican Barbeque, and cultural activities including music, dance, and harvest festivals;Youth Organizing and Leadership: 15 teens manage their own gardens, produce educational videos, teach gardening and school food improvement in school programs, engage in environmental conservation and community health organizing;Environmental Justice and Community Organizing: Adults and youth research and educate community about environmental problems disproportionately affecting the low-income Latino residents, and design action programs and solutions to improve the environment and community health;Enterprise and Cultural Development: Develop new agricultural, food, energy efficiency, and cultural enterprises & green jobs training by and for low-income community members. Nuestras Raíces provides technical assistance, access to loans, markets, and unique incubator facilities. Nuestras Raíces has helped launch over 25 new farms and businesses in Holyoke, including Energía, a new “triple bottom line” green energy services company with federal (HHS) community development grant support.

Impact Statement

Expanded Nuestras Raices farmers access to Farmers' Markets, added a new market at Donahue School.
Offered new beginning farmers training courses for local residents.
Established new children and youth community garden in the Flats neighborhood.
Started new youth leadership program on healthy school foods and food sovereignty, and launched Siembra Siempre, a beginning farmers training program for young adults.  Transitioned one youth from Siembra Siempre to adult beginning farmer's training program.
Selected as one of EPA CARE "Champions of Change" for work on environmental health education.
Underwent significant board and staff development as well as strategic planning continuing into 2013.
Launched "triple bottom line" energy services company, Energia.  Hire local youth as crew members.
 

Needs Statement

Unrestricted general operating funds
Creative income generation and alternatives to grants for financial sustainability
Funding for expansion and support and maintenance of community gardens
Funding for facility/space expansion and upgrade
Web-based program and outcomes management software for data tracking
 

CEO Statement

Nuestras Raices is unique because it responds to needs of
the low-income community of Holyoke, primarily Latino, participants in our network of community gardens, leadership groups, youth development, small business and farmer training programs. Nuestras Raices Farm provides our residents business opportunities, marketing assistance, and access to land. Urban agriculture has proven to be
an effective way to promote community development, and a connection to their culture while putting down roots in their new home. Participants are proud to have the opportunity to use their experience to improve their community and to teach to a younger generation. Nuestras Raices
has been recognized as one of the most effective organizations in the country with national grants from the Ford Foundation, W.K. Kellogg Foundation, US Department of Agriculture, and the US Department of Environmental Protection Agency.


Board Chair Statement

One of the biggest challenges as a small non-profit organization
is finding operational funds. Nuestras Raices is addressing this issue by
finding potential business owner to rent our business at the farm, community kitchen, farm store, Paso Fino horse barn and restaurant spaces to generate operational funding for the organization. Due to the hurricane Irene most of our farmers lost 90% of their crops this past year. They didn’t have crop insurance and we reached out from FEMA, NEMA and other pertinent agencies and didn’t qualify for funding. We started a major campaign through, internet, radio, local events and were able to raise close to $10,000 to help our farmers. Among our success we were able toexpand Nuestras Raices farmers access to Farmers' Markets, added a new market at Donahue School, established new children and youth community garden, started new youth leadership program on healthy school foods and food sovereignty, and launched Siembra Siempre, a beginning farmers training program for young adults,
selected as one of EPA CARE "Champions of Change" for work on
environmental health education, hired new Executive Director and recruited seven new board members from our local community.


Geographic Area Served

PIONEER VALLEY REGION, MA

Nuestras Raices serves primarily the low-income, predominantly Puerto Rican and Latino residents of Holyoke, Massachusetts, a small city with a population of 39,000.  Holyoke's strong textile and paper-based industrial economy provided employment for waves and generations of immigrants. The dam and the canals remain, but the economy, population and its labor force is vastly different.

Organization Categories

  1. Community Improvement, Capacity Building - Community & Neighbourhood Development
  2. Education - Alliances & Advocacy
  3. Food, Agriculture & Nutrition - Alliances & Advocacy

Independent research has been conducted on this organization's theory of change or on the effectiveness of this organization's program(s)

Under Development

Programs

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Community Gardens: We currently manage 10 community gardens with 125 families participating and we work with the residents of Holyoke to develop new gardens every year. The gardens change the urban environment, provide access to low-cost, nutritious food and brings friends, neighbors, youth and elders together to improve the community. Children's Gardening Plots: Groups of children plant and maintain flowers, vegetables and herbs in plots within each of the community gardens and in two youth gardens. The children are taught by the elderly community gardeners, who are proud to pass on their knowledge about planting and the culture of rural Puerto Rico. Series of Educational Workshops and Field Trips: Workshops are generally in subject areas of Health and Organic Gardening practices, and field trip destinations have ranged from the New York Botanical Gardens to local farms. Farmers' Market: The community gardeners sell surplus vegetables at a stand at the Holyoke Farmers' Market (WIC coupons accepted) managed by teenagers. Beginning Farms - Nuestras Raices is helping 8-12 community members with agricultural experience start up farms on 30 acres of fertile riverfront land, Nuestras Raices provides training, TA, access to shared equipment and marketing opportunities. Environmental Justice: Young people work to identify and address the environmental problems of inner-city Holyoke, Nuestras Raices has started up a community coalition. Centro Agr'cola Community agricultural center: This project has transformed a small building and vacant lot in downtown Holyoke to create a vibrant site for small business development and community education. Cultural Festivals and Activities: A series of music, arts and cultural activities
Budget  --
Category  --
Population Served --
Program Short-Term Success  --
Program Long-Term Success  Expanded network of community gardens to 10 gardens, 99 families and 110 youth.
Program Success Monitored By  --
Examples of Program Success  --

Environmental Justice Program

Nuestras Raíces works with a diverse group of partners to address the environmental justice concerns facing our community. These issues include indoor and outdoor air quality and asthma, land use and garbage, and water quality and fishing in the Connecticut River.  To help address these issues, we received a Level II EPA CARE grant in 2009, and we are currently working on the following action plans:

Outdoor Air Quality, Asthma & Community Health:

Reducing diesel emissions through local and state-wide ordinances

Improving air quality and reducing mercury emissions through “greening” the Mt. Tom coal plant

Climate justice and reducing our carbon footprint – “350 Actions for Holyoke”


Indoor Air Quality & Healthy Homes:

Healthy Homes Promotoras Trainings

Reducing Risks of Toxic Exposure and Using Greener Cleaning Products

Safer Home Pesticide Use

Reducing Mold & Moisture

 Land Use, Brownfields & Garbage:

¡Viva Verde! Recycling Project in Multi-family Residences

Brownfield Assessments and Reutilization

Expanding Community Gardens & Healthy Urban Green Spaces

 


Water Quality, Health & Safe Fishing in the Connecticut River:

Safe fishing educational campaign – bilingual fish advisories for pregnant women and children

River access & ecology of Connecticut River

Safe oil and waste disposal


Budget  100000/yr
Category  Environment, General/Other
Population Served Hispanic, Latino Heritage At-Risk Populations Children and Youth (0 - 19 years)
Program Short-Term Success  --
Program Long-Term Success  Reduce environmental health risks related to air and water quality in environmental justice communities in Holyoke, MA.
Program Success Monitored By  --
Examples of Program Success  --

La Finca/Farm Program

Nuestras Raices Farm/La Finca is located on 30 acres alongside the Connecticut River.  La Finca offers beginning farmers' trainings, helps immigrants and refugees begin commercial farms, offering technical assistance, shared equipment, innovative market opportunities and micro-loans, a youth farm, a farm store, a Paso Fino horse barn, a children's Petting Zoo, and annual cultural festivals such as the Festival de la Cosecha (Harvest Festival).
Budget  250000/yr
Category  Food, Agriculture & Nutrition, General/Other
Population Served General/Unspecified Hispanic, Latino Heritage Immigrant, Newcomers, Refugees
Program Short-Term Success  --
Program Long-Term Success  --
Program Success Monitored By  --
Examples of Program Success  --

Youth Programs and Policy

Nuestras Raices youth program offers leadership training programs focusing on gardening and agriculture, healthy school food, and environmental sustainability.
Budget  200000/yr
Category  Youth Development, General/Other
Population Served Adolescents Only (13-19 years) Hispanic, Latino Heritage
Program Short-Term Success  --
Program Long-Term Success  --
Program Success Monitored By  --
Examples of Program Success  --

CEO/Executive Director/Board Comments

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Management


CEO/Executive Director Ms Hilda Colon
CEO Term Start July 2011
CEO Email [email protected]
CEO Experience Hilda Colon has worked for Nuestras Raices since 2001. During her time at Nuestras Raices, she has become an expert at outreach, event organizing, training delivery,  administration and project development. She oversees all aspects of the organization including finacial management, staff and programs evaluation.
Co-CEO --
Co-CEO Term Start --
Co-CEO Email --
Co-CEO Experience --

Former CEOs and Terms

Name Start End
Mr. Marco Maina Jan 2011 June
Mr. Daniel Ross Jan 1995 May

Senior Staff

Name Title Experience/Biography
Mr. Diego Angarita Director of Youth Programs and Policy Diego Angarita holds a Bachelors of Arts from Hampshire College where he concentrated in Latin American Studies, Nutrition and Media Studies. He sits on the advisory board for the Department of Transitional Assistance, the Massachusetts Food Policy Alliance, the Holyoke Food and Fitness Policy Council, and the board of the Holyoke Land Trust. He has vast experience in coordinating youth programs ranging on topics from theater, video production, environmental education, health living, and cultural education.
Ms. Cynthia Espinosa Farm Programs Manager --
Mr. Jesus Espinosa Farm Sales Manager --
Mr. Thomas Trepanier Farm Site Manager --

Awards

Award Awarding Organization Year
Champions of Change Environmental Protection Agency 2011
Community Leadership Massachusetts Public Health Association 2008
Wave of the Future Glynwood Center 2008
Innovators for the Public, Social Entrepreneurs Ashoka 2007
Social Responsibility and the Environment American Association of Architects and Planners 2007
Harry Chapin Award for Self Reliance Innovation from World Hunger 2000

Affiliations

Affiliation Year
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Member of state association of nonprofits? Yes
Name of state association --

External Assessments and Accreditations

External Assessment or Accreditation Year
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Collaborations

Holyoke Food & Fitness Policy Council, CISA, Action for a Healthy Holyoke , Trustees of Reservation 

CEO/Executive Director/Board Comments

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Foundation Comments

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Staff Information

Number of Full Time Staff 5
Number of Part Time Staff 3
Number of Volunteers 15
Number of Contract Staff 3
Staff Retention Rate % --

Staff Demographics

Ethnicity African American/Black: 0
Asian American/Pacific Islander: 0
Caucasian: 0
Hispanic/Latino: 8
Native American/American Indian: 0
Other: 0
Other (if specified): --
Gender Female: 3
Male: 5
Not Specified 0

Plans & Policies

Organization has Fundraising Plan? Under Development
Organization has Strategic Plan? Under Development
Years Strategic Plan Considers 5
Management Succession Plan Under Development
Business Continuity of Operations Plan No
Organization Policies And Procedures Yes
Nondiscrimination Policy Under Development
Whistle Blower Policy No
Document Destruction Policy No
Directors and Officers Insurance Policy Yes
State Charitable Solicitations Permit Exempt
State Registration Yes

Risk Management Provisions

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Reporting and Evaluations

Management Reports to Board? Yes
CEO Formal Evaluation and Frequency Yes Annually
Senior Management Formal Evaluation and Frequency Yes Annually
Non Management Formal Evaluation and Frequency Yes Semi-Annually

Governance


Board Chair Ms. Julia Rivera
Board Chair Company Affiliation Community Volunteer
Board Chair Term Jan 2011 - Jan 2013
Board Co-Chair Richard Purcell
Board Co-Chair Company Affiliation Bay State Medical Center
Board Co-Chair Term July 2012 - June 2014

Board Members

Name Company Affiliations Status
Mr. Sean Capaloff-Jones UMass Credit Union Voting
Ms. Touria Eaton University of Massachusetts Voting
Ms. Karen Grossi Community Volunteer Voting
Ms. Maria Mendoza Community Volunteer Voting
Mr. Richard Purcell Community Volunteer Voting
Mr. Juan Renta Community Volunteer Voting
Ms Julia Rivera Community Volunteer Voting
Mr. K.C. Nat Turner University of Massachusetts Voting

Constituent Board Members

Name Company Affiliations Status
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Youth Board Members

Name Company Affiliations Status
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Advisory Board Members

Name Company Affiliations Status
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Board Demographics

Ethnicity African American/Black: 3
Asian American/Pacific Islander: 0
Caucasian: 1
Hispanic/Latino: 3
Native American/American Indian: 1
Other: 0
Other (if specified): --
Gender Female: 4
Male: 4
Not Specified 0

Board Information

Board Term Lengths 2
Board Term Limits --
Board Meeting Attendance % 80%
Written Board Selection Criteria Under Development
Written Conflict Of Interest Policy Under Development
Percentage of Monetary Contributions 40%
Percentage of In-Kind Contributions 80%
Constituency Includes Client Representation Yes

Standing Committees

  • Human Resources / Personnel

CEO/Executive Director/Board Comments

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Foundation Comments

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Financials


Revenue vs. Expense ($000s)

Expense Breakdown 2012 (%)

Expense Breakdown 2011 (%)

Expense Breakdown 2010 (%)

Fiscal Year Feb 01, 2012 to Jan 31, 2013
Projected Income $724,647.00
Projected Expense $706,744.00
Form 990s

2012 990

2011 990

2010 990

2009 990

Audit Documents

2012 Audited Financials

2011 Audited Financials

2010 Audited Financials

2009 Audited Financials

IRS Letter of Exemption

IRS Letter of Determination

Prior Three Years Total Revenue and Expense Totals

Fiscal Year 2012 2011 2010
Total Revenue $765,746 $1,030,692 $1,298,671
Total Expenses $735,944 $856,062 $1,084,847

Prior Three Years Revenue Sources

Fiscal Year 2012 2011 2010
Foundation and
Corporation Contributions
$130,411 $193,785 $515,972
Government Contributions $559,466 $790,387 $710,644
    Federal $559,466 $576,639 $512,929
    State -- $187,426 $159,999
    Local -- -- --
    Unspecified -- $26,322 $37,716
Individual Contributions $29,144 $10,153 $23,268
Indirect Public Support -- -- --
Earned Revenue $21,385 $22,171 $41,569
Investment Income, Net of Losses $28 $247 $709
Membership Dues -- -- --
Special Events -- -- --
Revenue In-Kind -- -- --
Other $25,312 $13,949 $6,510

Prior Three Years Expense Allocations

Fiscal Year 2012 2011 2010
Program Expense $581,037 $709,550 $841,608
Administration Expense $154,907 $146,512 $241,006
Fundraising Expense -- -- $2,232
Payments to Affiliates -- -- --
Total Revenue/Total Expenses 1.04 1.20 1.20
Program Expense/Total Expenses 79% 83% 78%
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue 0% 0% 0%

Prior Three Years Assets and Liabilities

Fiscal Year 2012 2011 2010
Total Assets $1,162,500 $1,131,226 $969,675
Current Assets $183,257 $162,210 $187,012
Long-Term Liabilities $0 $0 $0
Current Liabilities $191,347 $189,502 $198,528
Total Net Assets $971,153 $941,724 $771,147

Prior Three Years Top Three Funding Sources

Fiscal Year 2012 2011 2010
1st (Source and Amount) -- --
-- --
-- --
2nd (Source and Amount) -- --
-- --
-- --
3rd (Source and Amount) -- --
-- --
-- --

Financial Planning

Endowment Value --
Spending Policy --
Percentage(If selected) --
Credit Line Yes
Reserve Fund No
How many months does reserve cover? --

Capital Campaign

Are you currently in a Capital Campaign? No
Capital Campaign Purpose --
Campaign Goal --
Capital Campaign Dates -
Capital Campaign Raised-to-Date Amount --
Capital Campaign Anticipated in Next 5 Years? --

Short Term Solvency

Fiscal Year 2012 2011 2010
Current Ratio: Current Assets/Current Liabilities 0.96 0.86 0.94

Long Term Solvency

Fiscal Year 2012 2011 2010
Long-term Liabilities/Total Assets 0% 0% 0%

CEO/Executive Director/Board Comments

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Foundation Comments

Financial summary data in charts and graphs are per the organization's audited financials. In fiscal year 2012 the 'other' category above includes reimbursements, as noted in the 2012 Audited Financial document.

Documents


Other Documents

No Other Documents currently available.

Impact

The Impact tab is a section on the Giving Common added in October 2013; as such the majority of nonprofits have not yet had the chance to complete this voluntary section. The purpose of the Impact section is to ask five deceptively simple questions that require reflection and promote communication about what really matters – results. The goal is to encourage strategic thinking about how a nonprofit will achieve its goals. The following Impact questions are being completed by nonprofits slowly, thoughtfully and at the right time for their respective organizations to ensure the most accurate information possible.


1. What is your organization aiming to accomplish?

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2. What are your strategies for making this happen?

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3. What are your organization’s capabilities for doing this?

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4. How will your organization know if you are making progress?

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5. What have and haven’t you accomplished so far?

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