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We're launching the Westwood Food Co-op, Denver's first grocery store that is owned and operated by a community living in a food desert. Join us!
We're launching the Westwood Food Co-op, Denver's first grocery store that is owned and operated by a community living in a food desert. Join us!
503 backers pledged $55,576 to help bring this project to life.
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Launch the Westwood Food Co-op to Feed Food Deserts

$55,576

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It all started six years ago in a crowded room in an overlooked Denver neighborhood called Westwood. Late into the evening, people were talking heatedly about problems in the neighborhood: bad side-walks, crime, no stop-lights, no parks for kids to play in, garbage in all of the alleyways, roads that still weren't paved...but the biggest problem that kept surfacing throughout the discussion was limited access to healthy and affordable food. Westwood was and still is a food desert, a place where grocery stores won't open, and fresh food is hard to find.

In the room was a pack of community members and Eric Kornacki and Joseph Teipel, the co-founders of an environmental non-profit called Re:Vision. That day, a partnership was made between the community of Westwood and Re:Vision - to train neighbors on how to teach one another to grow food in their backyards, to live healthier lives, and to unite to solve the problems in their own communities. 

The result? Over the past six years, Re:Vision has built one of the largest urban agriculture programs in the country, based in the heart of Westwood. Re:Vision and the community have proven that healthy food shouldn't just be a privilege, but a basic human right. And now, they are taking their efforts even further.

One of the largest backyard gardening programs in the country...these dots...they're ALL backyard gardens!
One of the largest backyard gardening programs in the country...these dots...they're ALL backyard gardens!

A Grocery Store called the Westwood Food Co-op is Born...

The community still needs a grocery store. So in 2014, Re:Vision acquired a 1.7 acre piece of land in the heart of Westwood (a piece of land that included an old warehouse, several discarded Papier-mâché walrus heads, a house full of 200,000 glass eyeballs, and a few hundred dumpsters full of trash). Over the past year, the community of Westwood and Re:Vision have together worked tirelessly to clean and renovate the space, and together, with the community of Westwood, they are opening Denver's very first cooperative grocery store that is owned and operated by a community living in a food desert. The store is called the Westwood Food Co-op (or COOP! as many members of the community say).

But they can't do it without you. Even though Re:Vision has earned prestigious grants to purchase the property and begin to renovate the space, they need to raise an additional $200,000 to open the space in time, by early 2016. 

With $50,000 raised through this Kickstarter campaign, Re:Vision and the community will be able to make the basic interior renovations to make the inside of the warehouse functional as a grocery store.

Anything Re:Vision can raise above that will go towards the thousands of things necessary to open a successful food co-op. 

With your help, the Westwood Food Co-op will open in early 2016 and become a model for how to transform urban food systems across the country. Make history today. Join us as a member, a supporter, and an ally in this movement!

The grocery store will look like this...and so much more!
The grocery store will look like this...and so much more!

Check out some of the examples of our prizes and rewards below!

Our illustration for the t-shirts and tote bags!
Our illustration for the t-shirts and tote bags!
Did you say, T-shirts?!
Did you say, T-shirts?!
A blueprint the color of warehouse iron.
A blueprint the color of warehouse iron.

Risks and challenges

There are many obstacles that Re:Vision and the Westwood Food Co-op have already faced - Heck! When they purchased the property, they had to wade through many tons of physical junk just to find the soil again and begin repairing it from the very roots.

Everyday, there is something new they have to work around in building this site. But the good news is that they are not alone - very far from it. They have 400 family partners that they work with who support this project and help them find solutions together. They have strong community partners across the city of Denver who are rooting them on and doing everything they can to build the Westwood Food Co-op.

If setbacks happen - as they do happen and they will happen - the community are ready to tackle them like they do every single day. This project has been a vision and dream planned over six years, running on the passion and need of thousands of people.

Unlike other co-op projects across the nation that haven't been met with much success, the Westwood Food Co-op is different because it has such a solid and stable foundation of support. And now that we are so close to finishing the project, we know that it will become a reality. And it will be a success!

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 5 or more About US$ 5

    Receive an e-poem by Slow Money Founder Woody Tasch about being part of a movement of people funding to kickstart the Westwood Food Co-op.

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    26 backers
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  2. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 20 or more About US$ 20

    Receive a "Growing Local is Rad(ish!)" tote bag for all of your grocery shopping that you will do at your favorite co-op! All totes are designed and printed locally at A Small Print Shop from right here in Denver, CO.

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    151 backers
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    Pledge US$ 50 or more About US$ 50

    Receive an Annual Westwood Food Co-op membership and a super limited edition voice recording from the Mayor of Denver, Michael Hancock made special just for your answering machine.

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    68 backers
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  4. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 70 or more About US$ 70

    Receive a "Growing Local is Rad(ish!)" t-shirt made of Made in USA, with Organic Cotton and Recycled Polyester (read: soft, wrinkle-free, and infused with love). All t-shirts are designed and printed locally at A Small Print Shop from right here in Denver, CO.

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    106 backers
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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 150 or more About US$ 150

    Receive a limited edition 8x11 framed blueprint of the store and an annual membership to the Westwood Food Co-op.

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    25 backers
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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 500 or more About US$ 500

    Receive a lifetime family membership to the co-op and a welcome gift basket of Westwood Food Co-op items.

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    12 backers
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  7. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 750 or more About US$ 750

    Receive a private cooking class from a Re:Vision Promotora for you and 4 of your close friends at your home or at the Re:Vision kitchen La Cocina (Home must be within 10 miles of 80219).

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    Limited 3 backers
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  8. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 1,000 or more About US$ 1,000

    Receive an on-site 60 second shopping-spree for anything in the newly opened Westwood Food Co-op.

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    Limited 5 backers
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  9. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 1,500 or more About US$ 1,500

    Receive the honor of naming your very own Westwood Food Co-op grocery cart (to live at the co-op indefinitely) or a sandwich (for everyone to purchase and celebrate your name with glory).

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    Limited 3 backers
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  10. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 2,000 or more About US$ 2,000

    Receive the help of a Promotora coaching you for one season on how to grow your own garden (maximum area is 400 sq. ft and custom supplies will be included. Gift must be within 10 miles of 80219).

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    Limited 1 backer
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  11. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 5,000 or more About US$ 5,000

    Receive a private party party catered by a top Denver chef and Westwood Food Co-op member using a member inspired by Re:Vision's backyard gardening program. Party must be within 10 miles of 80219.

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    Limited 0 backers
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    Pledge US$ 10,000 About US$ 10,000

    Receive the coveted honor of naming our freezer! You will also be able to "rent" the space for free for your own evening event!

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    Limited 0 backers
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Funding period

- (30 days)