ARPA funding going towards new building in Gullah community

Published: Dec. 8, 2021 at 4:38 PM EST
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ST. HELENA ISLAND, S.C. (WTOC) - Money from the American Rescue Plan Act has been talked about for months.

But Wednesday, one Lowcountry community saw that money come to life.

Out in the fields of Saint Helena Island a quarter of a million dollars in ARPA funds came to fruition Wednesday with the dedication of a building, but to the Gullah Geechee culture of the community it means so much more than that.

All these locals came to celebrate progress for the Gullah Farmers Cooperative. With the opening of this 10,000 square foot facility, the organization says community members will be able to keep and use the land that’s so precious in Gullah culture.

“We want to demonstrate that the native Gullah community can stay here, they can stay here, they can be productive, but more importantly is that the culture remains here,” said York Glover, secretary at Gullah Farmers Cooperative.

Glover appreciates the county for the money and states this step forward for the culture wouldn’t have been possible without that financial boost. The Beaufort County School District says they’re pitching in too. The schools will buy fruits and vegetables from the co-op to use in student lunches.

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