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Worcester Food & Active Living Policy Council: An Introduction

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Worcester Food & Active Living Policy Council: An Introduction

  1. 1.  Origins: Summer Feeding Project Success  Funder: Health Foundation of Central MA  Timeline: 2007-2012  Purpose: Hunger as a Public Health Issue
  2. 2.  2007 – Planning  2008 – Pilot  2009-2012 – Implement & Continuously Evaluate
  3. 3.  Dedicated funder  Strong, cooperative coalition of organizations  Dedicated funds for and importance placed on evaluation
  4. 4.  WCFB  WPS  United Way  UMass Memorial  Saint Vincent  Regional Environmental Council  Congressman McGovern’s Office  Project Bread  Share Our Strength/Cooking Matters  Health Foundation of Central MA  Dept. of Transitional Assistance
  5. 5.  Community food security is a condition in which all community residents obtain a safe, culturally acceptable, nutritionally adequate diet through a sustainable food system that maximizes community self-reliance and social justice. --Mike Hamm and Anne Bellows
  6. 6.  Low Income Food Needs  Broad Goals  Community focus  Self-reliance/empowerment  Local agriculture  Systems-oriented
  7. 7. Collaboration, Communication, Sustainability School Meals SNAP Cooking Classes Gardening Farmers Markets
  8. 8.  Reach: 2/3 of meals eaten in schools  Need: 70% free and reduced  Success: › 16 schools have breakfast in the classroom › Whole grain, fresh fruits & veggies › Farm to School › 10 Get Fresh, Get Local programs › No high fructose corn syrup in milk › Wellness Policy › School Nutrition legislation
  9. 9.  Need: only 49% of eligible households participated in 2004  Success › April 2009 – January 2011:  30 sites throughout city  200 new Worcester families on SNAP  Minimum of $180,000 in benefits secured  80% of applicants would not have applied without mobile advocacy and assistance  In MA 77% eligible are participating
  10. 10. April 2009 – August 2011 Number of applications submitted 493 Average approval rating 62% Average benefit procured $185/month Total benefits: 2009 (May – Dec) 2010 2011 (through August) TOTAL $76,764.00 $89,868.00 $86,677.00 $253,309.00 Race/Ethnicity White Black Hispanic/Latino Asian Unknown/Other 38.5% 8.6% 36.0% 2.2% 14.2% Children served 261
  11. 11.  Share Our Strength Cooking Matters  Success: › 115 adults and 15 youth graduated between 2008-2011. Classes maintained a 73% graduation rate. › 73% are eating more vegetables › 62% are eating more fruits › 80% are eating more whole grains › 47% are eating more low-fat or fat-free dairy › 49% are eating more lean meats › 90% improved their cooking skills
  12. 12.  Need: Students have little connection to where their food comes from  Success: › Since 2010, 20 new gardens established in elementary, middle and high schools › Teachers and principals report high usage of garden › Has promoted cross-subject integration: health, woodworking, math, writing, community service, life skills
  13. 13.  Need: No markets in low-income neighborhoods; none accepted SNAP  Success › Main South Farmers Market averages 300- 500 weekly attendees › Over $12,000 in SNAP/WIC sales 2011 › 2011 season sales: $33,000 › Great Brook Valley and mobile markets expanding
  14. 14. $- $2,000.00 $4,000.00 $6,000.00 $8,000.00 $10,000.00 $12,000.00 $14,000.00 Saletotal Year SNAP, WIC, Senior Coupon Sales 2009 2010 2011
  15. 15.  Coalition and relationships  Regional Environmental Council › Farmers’ Markets, Cooking Classes, School Gardens  Project Bread, WCFB, DTA & SNAP  Diversified funding due to early successes  Continued advocacy
  16. 16. Worcester Food & Active Living Policy Council Hunger & Food Access Urban Ag School Food Walking & Biking Worksite Wellness
  17. 17. Public Health/Medical Social Justice Anti-hunger Bike & Ped Advocates Environment/ Conservation Research Youth
  18. 18. Engaging diverse partners to foster a healthy and just food system and active community environment. Educate. Advocate. Collaborate. Celebrate.
  19. 19. What is a “food system” and “built environment”? Food system: A food system includes all processes involved in producing food for people: growing, harvesting, processing, packaging, transport ing, marketing, consuming, and disposing of food and food-related items. It also includes all the natural resources, labor, infrastructure, and equipment needed for each step in the food system. Built Environment: The built environment (as opposed to the natural environment) is the part of the environment formed and shaped by people, including but not limited to: buildings, parks, roads, sidewalks, signs, trails, and utilities, and other public and private elements.
  20. 20.  School Nutrition  School Gardens  SNAP Outreach  Healthy Cooking  Farmers’ Markets  Coalition building & collaboration
  21. 21.  Urban Agriculture  WalkBike Worcester  Youth engagement  Farm Bill  Food Day!!
  22. 22. Liz Sheehan Castro hungerfree@worcesterfoodpolicy.org 508-723-4550 http://hungerfreeandhealthy.wordpress.com Facebook Twitter

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