Diversity & Inclusion
Environment / Roundups

Second Chances Farm launches in Wilmington with new trainees and a hemp license

The 47,500-square-foot facility in Riverside is bringing on 17 returning citizens to help run the indoor urban farm.

Ajit George speaks next to one of the hydroponic towers that will soon fill the Second Chances Farm warehouse space in Riverside. (Photo by Holly Quinn)

Ajit George and his team had a lot to announce at the launch of social impact startup Second Chances Farm, where it celebrated the official opening of its 47,500-square-foot facility in Wilmington with a “ladybug dedication.”

That’s like a ribbon cutting, but instead of wielding oversized scissors, the governor, New Castle County executive, mayor and City Council president (among others) released tiny bags of live ladybugs into a floor-to-ceiling vertical “fields” of hydroponic lettuce and herbs.

The urban farm in Riverside will soon also be growing hemp, which is processed into CBD oil, after receiving approval for a license to grow it. (Hemp, a strain of cannabis that has an extremely low level of THC — the substance that gets you high — was made legal in all 50 states with the passage of the 2018 Federal Farm Bill.)

The farm will also offer a few free services to people who live in the neighborhood, including a Crossfit gym and wireless WhyFly service via a connection on the top of the building.

Seventeen returning citizens who have completed their sentences of incarceration have been selected as the first trainee cohort and will receive 16 weeks of paid training.

“We believe those nearest to the solution have also the been affected nearest to the problem,” said Saad Soliman, executive director of Peace by Piece, the organization that assists with the reentry program at Second Chances Farm. “Borrowing from my own experience having served 15 years in prison and overcoming boundaries, overcoming barriers, overcoming obstacles, I believe in the leadership of every single man and woman that we’re bringing in here. Let’s humanize the components of who these men and women really are.”

In addition to Second Chances Farm launch, George is also celebrating the launch of his new book, “The Magic of the Red Carpet,” which follows his journey from the founding of TEDxDelaware to Second Chances Farm. All proceeds of the book will go to Peace by Piece.

Watch Soliman introduce the new team members here:

Companies: Second Chances Farm

Before you go...

Please consider supporting Technical.ly to keep our independent journalism strong. Unlike most business-focused media outlets, we don’t have a paywall. Instead, we count on your personal and organizational support.

3 ways to support our work:
  • Contribute to the Journalism Fund. Charitable giving ensures our information remains free and accessible for residents to discover workforce programs and entrepreneurship pathways. This includes philanthropic grants and individual tax-deductible donations from readers like you.
  • Use our Preferred Partners. Our directory of vetted providers offers high-quality recommendations for services our readers need, and each referral supports our journalism.
  • Use our services. If you need entrepreneurs and tech leaders to buy your services, are seeking technologists to hire or want more professionals to know about your ecosystem, Technical.ly has the biggest and most engaged audience in the mid-Atlantic. We help companies tell their stories and answer big questions to meet and serve our community.
The journalism fund Preferred partners Our services
Engagement

Join our growing Slack community

Join 5,000 tech professionals and entrepreneurs in our community Slack today!

Trending

The Trump rally shooter perched on a building owned by American Glass Research. Here’s everything we know about it.

Quantum computing could be the next hot tech — if only that breakthrough would come

From global juggernauts to local government, this developer never stops serving

What Delaware's new privacy law means for residents and businesses

Technically Media