Today, Congresswoman Laura Richardson announced that the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) awarded a $54,000 Rural Development Program grant to Long Beach's Kitchen Food Ventures (KFV).
Rural Development grants are used to deliver business development services to low-income farmers. KFV will be using the funds to teach farmers to use computing hardware and software to strengthen and grow their businesses.
"I have always supported the Carson Farmer's Market, and when I saw many of the farmers still using pen and paper to keep track of their business, I learned most of them do not know how to use computers," said Cherie Beasley the Director of KFV. "I came up with the program so that they can learn how to use technology to make their farms more efficient and gain higher revenues."
"USDA's Rural Development Program makes it possible for rural small farmers to market their products to urban consumers here in the 37th Congressional District. That is why I have strongly supported this program throughout my time in Congress," said Congresswoman Richardson. "Rural Development grants make it possible for worthy low-income participants to benefit from the course of instruction without regard to ability to pay."
"In my district, where unemployment is still very high in some areas, much of our future economic growth will result directly from small businesses. They are the engine that drives the American economy and when they are able grow to their full potential, we as a community, a state and a nation prosper," said Congresswoman Richardson.
KVF will use the grant to administer a ten week class where farmers learn everything needed to incorporate technology into their businesses. Program participants also receive a computer upon successful completion.