The Healey-Driscoll Administration announced an award of nearly $250,000 in Local Food Policy Council program funding to 17 organizations across Massachusetts. Including a grant for the City of Everett. The Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources’ (MDAR) grants will enhance the work of existing and new local food policy councils and food working groups across Massachusetts. The grants will help to accelerate their development, expand their capacity, and increase their connections and opportunities for peer-to-peer learning to support the Massachusetts local food system.
“Massachusetts’ local food policy councils and food working groups are vital to the fabric of our food system and help connect communities to healthy, nutritious foods. We are happy to recognize and invest in this important work,” said Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Rebecca Tepper. “This support is critical, especially as our local food system weathers an increasingly volatile climate.”
“We greatly appreciate this appropriation from our partners in the state legislature to provide these grants to our Massachusetts local food policy councils and food working groups,” said MDAR Commissioner Ashley Randle. “Projects and initiatives funded through this program will develop and continue work to impact the long-term viability and sustainability of our local food system in Massachusetts.”
“Adequately addressing issues of food insecurity in our communities is crucial to moving forward as a Commonwealth without leaving anyone behind,” said Senator Lydia Edwards (D – East Boston). “I am grateful to the Healey-Driscoll Administration for making sure our local food policy councils have the necessary funding to amplify our working ensuring all residents can go to bed without feeling hungry.”
“The work of our local food policy councils, to promote the farming and sale of Massachusetts-grown foods, and the accessibility of fresh, nutritious foods is indispensable to the Commonwealth,” said Senator Edward J. Kennedy (D – Lowell). “I am proud to be a member of a legislative body that understands the importance of local food systems and invests in their resilience.”
The City of Everett was a grant recipient for 2023:
City of Everett – Everett, MA: $17,991.00
The Everett Food Policy Council will update and implement its 2018 Community Food Plan. Working groups will prioritize policy, program actions, and revisions based on changes since the Plan was written. A project manager will be hired. Funding will also support a new website, social media campaign, sign-up form, and print and advertising campaign in at least three languages. Meetings will be held in a physically accessible space with translation and video conferencing. Outcomes will include determining priority actions for 2023, increasing awareness of food issues within the community, building trust with community members, collaborating with other Everett organizations, and additional participation and diversification of the Council.