The Guilford College Bonner Center has been operating the Mobile Oasis Farmers Market in Greensboro, North Carolina officially since 2017 when the project was transferred from the Guilford County Department of Health and Human Services who started the project in 2014. It was felt that since Guilford College had 3 cultivated acres of land and the needed infrastructure in place, they would be better fit to run the mobile market. In addition to this, Guilford College being a Quaker founded institution aligned well with the mission of the market, which was to take local, sustainably grown produce and sell it at a subsidized rate in communities with low access to grocery stores and farmers markets. When the project was received, Guilford College Bonner Center staff and volunteers were operating under the Farmers Market Promotion Program Grant through the USDA, going to two different neighborhoods and two different county offices weekly. After the 2-year grant was completed in 2018, Guilford College Bonner Center had more autonomy to change the market sites and set up in communities with prior relationships. Now, after the being accepted to the Veggie Van Grant, Mobile Oasis spends their time by operating weekly at a thriving neighborhood market they have been a going to for 5 years as well as beginning research and outreach to the new communities involved in the study.
The Guilford College Bonner Center plays a vital role in supporting the mobile market while meeting its mission and purpose of providing a practical, liberal arts education through which students, faculty, and staff also make a positive impact on communities. Guilford College offers several programs and services related to food production, aggregation, distribution and cooking/nutrition education. Programs include the Quaker Cupboard, an on-campus pantry, and the Newcomer’s School Garden that provides garden education program for newly arrived youth from immigrant or refugee backgrounds, and a weekly produce drop off in a community consisting of mostly low-income immigrants and refugees. In addition to this, the Guilford College Farm serves as a living, learning laboratory for the Guilford College community and supplies the majority of the produce for the Mobile Oasis Farmers Market.
Urban Fruits & Vegetables has been operating a mobile market in Buffalo, New York since 2015. The market serves approximately 5000-5500 in underserved communities throughout Western New York. Urban Fruits & Veggies provides additional services that include a Fruits & Vegetables Prescription Program (FVRx) recipes, cooking demonstrations, and a corporate wellness program.Urban Fruits & Veggies has its own urban farm to source the produce for the mobile market but will also source from local farmers.
Community Food Initiatives (CFI) has been operating the Donation Station in Athens, Ohio since 2008. The Donation Station addresses food insecurity by providing immediate food access while simultaneously supporting the regional food system and reducing food waste, ultimately working to support an equitable regional food system. CFI receives monetary donations that are reinvested to purchase produce from regional growers. In addition to purchased produce, CFI distributes donated produce to food access partners. Additional CFI programming includes educational outreach through cooking and gardening workshops, community and school garden management/support, and food access mapping. Follow CFI and the Donation Station at their website and social media: Website: https://communityfoodinitiatives.org/ Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CommunityFoodInitiatives/ Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/communityfoodinitiatives/ Twitter: https://twitter.com/AthensOhioCFI
Massachusetts Avenue Project
Massachusetts Avenue Project (MAP) has been operating a mobile market in Buffalo, New York since 2009. MAP offers additional programs that further support their mission to nurture a diverse and equitable Western New York food system, promote local economic opportunities, access to affordable, nutritious food and social change education. These programs include an urban farm, youth leadership programs, cooking and nutrition education, and food justice advocacy. MAP prioritizes partnerships with local farms to source fresh, affordable produce that is sold at multiple sites in underserved communities throughout the City of Buffalo. MAP’s new Farmhouse and community food training center also provides an expansive space for programming and cold storage. Follow MAP at their website and social media: Website: https://www.mass-ave.org/ Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MassAveProject Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/massaveproject/?hl=en Twitter: https://twitter.com/MassAveProject
Local Matters creates healthy communities through food education, access, and advocacy. We build skills through education, increase access to fresh, affordable foods, and advocate for policies that support healthier communities. We support the health and wellness of everyone from preschoolers to seniors by:
offering virtual classes to help families shop for and cook healthy meals on a budget
increasing safe access to healthy foods in our communities through programs like Veggie Van
administering benefits programs to put more money in people's pockets for groceries
growing food for neighbors in 14 community gardens
advocating for policies that support food education and access for our community
While our children attended Morehead Elementary School during the 2008-2009 school year, we noticed several of their classmates experiencing food insecurity. We felt called to help make a difference in these children’s lives, and so we started what eventually became the Out of the Garden Project in our home around our dining room table.
We began personally supplying six to ten families with a small bag of food each Friday so that those children and their families would have something to eat over the weekend. What began as a humble act of kindness has now grown to the largest organization of its kind in the Piedmont Triad. That’s all thanks to you!
Bit by bit, we are changing our little piece of the world – and supporters like you are at the heart of that change. Together, we are taking on what we believe is the greatest epidemic facing the world today: chronic hunger. The problems it causes echo throughout every corner of our community, robbing so many of our neighbors of their well-being, dignity, and potential. The toll hunger takes on our children is the most heartbreaking of all.
The free and reduced-price meals they receive at school are helpful, but more can and should be done to help these children. The fact is that without adequate nutrition, children’s brains and bodies will struggle to grow. This makes learning more difficult and their futures more precarious. Thanks to you, we are not standing idly by.
Every month, more than 800 Out of the Garden Project volunteers take it upon themselves to make this community better. Supporters like you collect food, sort it in our warehouse, package it for families, and/or deliver it to schools, giving generously of your time and financial resources. No contribution is too small, and we need every single one of you to help the children and families in our community. Out of the Garden Project is a story of miracles — the story of amazing things that would not happen but actually do — because people like you come together to move mountains of hunger. This is a story of hope. With your help, we have many more chapters to write, and the families we help get a chance to live better lives. Thank you for all you do in service of our kids and our community.
Since our launch in 2016, The Bulb has established community-led sponsorships and received grants that have allowed us to grow from 2 donation-based weekly markets to more than 12 in neighborhoods across the Charlotte metro area. A majority of our produce comes from small, sustainable North Carolina and South Carolina farms that are working to meaningfully connect local produce to the community. Complementary to fighting food insecurity, the fight against food waste is a critical part of our mission. We partner with local grocery stores to “rescue” food they have deemed unsellable. Our Food Rescue Team then sorts, washes and repackages what is still quality, and composts the rest to make nutrient-rich soil for the farm.