Grants aid Bowdoin Healthy Food Access
The Boston Foundation has awarded the Bowdoin Street Health Center a three-year, $270,000 grant to support its efforts to improve access to fresh produce and other healthy food choices for residents of Dorchester's Bowdoin/Geneva section.
The grant supports the health center's Healthy Food Access Project, which links a community farmers' market with corner stores and area restaurants, consumers and Dorchester youth and helps local store owners revamp their merchandising in order to make the sale of fresh produce and other healthy foods a good business proposition.
Additionally, the center was one of 11 organizations in 10 different states to receive funding as part of the inaugural ConAgra Foods Foundation Community Impact Grants program, receiving $24,985 for the same project. More than 325 non-profit organizations from across the country responded to the new ConAgra grant program.
"We are pleased that The Boston Foundation and the ConAgra Foods Foundation have made such a significant commitment to our community," said Bowdoin Street Health Center Executive Director Adela Margules. "We are very excited to be able to partner with our community residents and local businesses to create permanent opportunities to provide healthy food choices in the Bowdoin/Geneva neighborhood."
The Boston Foundation President and CEO Paul S. Grogan said, "We are particularly pleased to invest in an organization whose important work is so closely aligned with the Foundation's commitment to encourage healthy behaviors among Boston residents and increase access to healthy food and opportunities for physical activity."
"Nearly 17 million children in the United States struggle with hunger throughout the year. That's almost one in four kids. There are hundreds of groups doing their part to help children in need, and we're focusing our funding on identifying and funding groups that are using innovative solutions. We'll study their successes and share them with others so that we can move closer to ending child hunger," said Kori Reed, executive director, ConAgra Foods Foundation.
The Healthy Food Access Project takes a multi-pronged approach to address the important public health issue of ensuring inner city families have access to healthy food choices. Over the next three years, the project aims to establish the economic sustainability of an existing farmers' market, support and educate local merchants to expand healthy food offerings and realize the profitability of such adaptations, and foster healthier purchasing patterns among residents through consumer education.
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