Food Solutions Project
Bringing fresh, healthy, and affordable food to the Elliot Park neighborhood.
We are currently seeking neighbors to join the Food Solutions Team!
Learn more below and sign up here!
Although the Elliot Park neighborhood is densely populated, supports a large number of employees, and hosts a university, the community offers only three restaurants (one remains open during the pandemic), two convenience shops, and no grocery stores. The nearest downtown grocery stores cater to high-end clientele and/or downtown business workers with fast-casual options. To obtain affordable groceries, residents must travel to other parts of the city which requires a bus ride with at least one transfer for households without a car. This is especially difficult for low-income families, senior citizens, and residents with disabilities.
We believe that everyone should have access to healthy foods, regardless of income or zip code. For decades, developers have told us that Elliot Park is a “risky market” for retailers and that it’s unlikely to see commercial growth (including food) unless household incomes increase. We will no longer accept the prevailing excuses nor statistics. We believe access to food is a basic human right and we work together each day to create a vibrant community where healthy foods are easily accessible, readily available, and affordable for everyone.
Food Solutions Team
Since 2018, the Food Solutions Team has worked together to bring fresh, healthy, and affordable food to the Elliot Park neighborhood.
Together, the Team has:
- Secured two grants from the Headwaters Foundation for Justice to explore the food access issue, identify possible solutions, and test solutions
- Hosted a low-cost food market during the summer of 2020 in partnership with The Food Group
- Partnered with House of Charity to deliver weekly food bags to 150 families in three Elliot Park buildings
- Identified a storefront market as the preferred long-term solution to address food access challenges
We are now preparing for the next chapter!
Moving forward, we plan to continue our partnerships to bring food to the neighborhood on a temporary basis while we work toward the vision of a storefront market.
Next steps for the team include:
- Visiting the newly opened Good Grocer (a nonprofit market of interest)
- Exploring partnerships with other organizations like FINNEGANS and FINNovation Lab
- Connecting with others working on food access
- Hiring a consultant to further explore different business models of markets, identify potential sites that could support a market, and determine next steps
Join the team!
We are seeking applicants for the Food Solutions Team, a group of dedicated volunteers to guide the work toward a goal of a storefront market to serve the community. This project is a heavy lift for the community and we are seeking passionate, energetic, and engaged community members to support our exciting vision. Many hands make light(er) work!
As a Food Solutions Team volunteer, you will:
- Attend 1-2 team meetings per month
- Complete some tasks between meetings
- Take occasional trips to sites of interest (i.e. Good Grocer)
- Meet neighbors excited about food access
- Make a significant contribution to the community with your volunteer time
If this sounds interesting, sign-up for more information here!