(April 15, 2014 – Boston) Project Bread is awarding more than $100,000 to 20 farm and urban gardening programs in 16 communities across Massachusetts. These grants, awarded during the spring planting season, are designed to help these agricultural programs start the season strongly. Each of the grantees helps provide sustainable, responsible solutions that help people get access to healthy, affordable food where they live.
“Both rural and urban gardening programs are a tremendous resource here in Massachusetts. These programs offer individuals access to healthy and nutritious food, often in areas where these foods aren’t readily available,” said Ellen Parker, executive director of Project Bread. “We know hunger is a complex problem and there is no one solution that will meet the needs of every individual. These programs present a unique solution that helps meet the needs of the food insecure in our community and we are proud to be able to help.”
The 20 farm and gardening programs receiving 2014 grants are:
• Massachusetts Farm to School Project – Amherst
• Boston Natural Areas Network – Boston
• Mattapan Food & Fitness Coalition – Boston
• Urban Farming Institute – Boston
• The Food Project – Boston/Lincoln/Lynn
• Gaining Ground – Concord
• Dartmouth YMCA – Dartmouth/New Bedford
• Growing Places – Fitchburg
• St. James Open Hand Garden – Haverhill
• Groundwork Lawrence – Lawrence
• Mill City Grows – Lowell
• Neighbors in Need – Lowell
• Community Harvest Project – North Grafton
• Seeds of Solidarity – Orange
• Co-Act – Pittsfield
• City of Somerville: Shape Up – Somerville
• Gardening the Community – Springfield
• Community Farms Outreach – Waltham
• REC – Worcester
• Lutheran Social Services – Worcester/West Springfield
Solutions to hunger are often found within the larger food system. To reliably help those who are dealing with hunger, solutions need to be sustainable. To help ensure this level of sustainability, Project Bread often works with organizations that assist local farmers and producers.
For example, Suk, a Bhutanese refugee has worked with the New Lands Farm program through Lutheran Social Services in Worcester. Through this program, Suk is able to grow potatoes, beans, corn, cabbage, and hot peppers which he sells at farmers’ markets and brings home to feed his family With the Project Bread grants, organizations like Lutheran Social Services are able to help individuals like this during the critical spring planting season.
In addition to farm and gardening solutions, Project Bread runs and supports community food programs, school nutrition initiatives, programs that make it possible for people in need to pick up food with dignity, and Food Source Hotline—a toll-free hotline that is the only comprehensive statewide information and referral service in Massachusetts for people facing hunger. To learn about food resources available in the community, call 1-800-645-8333.
About Project Bread
Project Bread is the only statewide anti-hunger organization committed to providing people of all ages, cultures, and walks of life with sustainable, reliable access to nutritious food. From community-based meal programs, to early childhood and school nutrition initiatives, to improved access to farm-to-table resources, Project Bread approaches hunger as a complex problem with multiple solutions. With funds raised through The Walk for Hunger, the oldest continual pledge walk in the country, and other sources, Project Bread pioneers innovative initiatives and supports effective programs to eradicate hunger in our state. For more information, visit www.projectbread.org, www.facebook.com/projectbread, or www.twitter.com/walkforhunger.
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