Farm that helps at-risk youth faces financial hurdle

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by NATALIE SWABY / KING 5 News

Bio | Email | Follow: @NSwabyKing5

KING5.com

Posted on September 20, 2013 at 10:32 PM

Updated Friday, Sep 20 at 10:37 PM

OLYMPIA, Wash. -- Nature Nurtures Farm in Olympia is a place that serves two purposes. During Spring break and the Summer, parents pay to send their kids to day camp at the farm which has horses, donkeys, and chickens. The 23-acre property also hosts a free mentoring program for at-risk youth.

Executive Director Nicole Peters said it has been a passion of hers to help people who need it.
 
"We have a lot of kids who are living in foster care, so what that often means is their life is really transient," said Peters.
 
By connecting kids going through a tough time with animals, she's seen healing. But now her farm faces a financial hurdle. It turns out her farm misinterpreted a Thurston county code, according to Peters.
 
"We were serving too many kids in our horse camp program, and once you cross a certain threshold you are considered a commercial entity," said Peters.
 
She said she needs to make certain upgrades in order to apply for a special use permit. In two months time, Nature Nurtures Farm needs to raise $29,000 in order to keep their day camp going. If that goal is not reached the farm programs could go away. 
 
"As much as it would be painful to close our doors, we really need the camp program to sustain the mentoring program," said Peters.
 
Nature Nurtures Farm has started an online fundraising campaign. Find out more here 

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