Grace Year is in a rural part of the United States, making the program a huge asset to the local communities. All of the towns, villages, and hamlets in our area have between zero and two stop-lights. Many people are involved in agriculture, whether they are boutique horse farm owners or undocumented farm workers.
Millbrook is in the center of Dutchess County, a county bordered on the West side by the Hudson River and on the East side by Connecticut. We are a two-hour drive or train ride into Manhattan, which makes us rural but never remote. It's very easy to go to New York City for the weekend or a day-trip, and Dutchess County has many commuters.
Grace Year is based in Millbrook, but fellows also focus their energies in Pine Plains, Millerton, Amenia, Wassaic, Dover, and Wingdale.
What are some of the issues our fellows work to fix?
- Immigrant advocacy and services. Fellows work at Grace Immigrant Outreach, advocating for changes in law and policy, as well as connecting immigrants with food, housing, jobs, transportation and accompaniment to immigration hearings.
- Food insecurity is an issue for too many residents, and our fellows have worked at various food pantries to help close that gap.
- Environmental advocacy and conservation. A number of our fellows have worked at environmental organizations doing research, outdoor conservation activities and public education to address the threats to our environment.