Shared Community means Weaver Street Market is a vibrant community hub for enjoyable work and shopping experiences, fun events, and connecting with the greater community. This year, thanks to tremendous support from our shoppers and workers, two of our community initiatives made significant strides in providing healthy food to those in need in our community. Our Cooperative Community Fund will fund three community projects that connect young people and families with information and tools needed to grow or prepare healthy food. Read about this year’s grants below. Donations through our Community Food Partnerships grew by 39 percent in our first two 2016 food campaigns, with donations totaling $89,500. Click here to read our feature story about this program.
Cooperative Community Fund awards $3,800 in grants
Weaver Street Market gives grants each year to local nonprofits for community projects that focus on “Access to Healthy Food.” The grants come from our Cooperative Community Fund (CCF), a sustainable endowment fund for community donations. We grow the fund through contributions from owners and shoppers, including the purchase of Hope for the Holiday products, proceeds from the April and October wine shows, and donated owner dividends and shares.
This year three local nonprofits will receive $3,800 for their proposed projects. The CCF Committee, which is composed of consumer and worker owners, selected the three recipients for innovation, collaboration, and the benefits of the projects to the community.
$940 for Chapel Hill High School’s proposed renovations to its Student Garden Beds. “The renovations to the existing outdoor garden space will make it easier and more rewarding for our students to plant and maintain the garden. We plan to have students grow vegetables in the garden that will be used in cooking classes, taken home by students, or donated to the Inter-Faith Council. By showing our students how to grow and use fresh organic vegetables, we are improving access to healthy foods in our community.” The project funds will be used to repair the 25 garden beds and to purchase high-quality soil and seeds.
$1,000 for TABLE’s proposed expansion to their field trip project—TABLE On the Go.
This project builds upon the field trip project launched with last year’s grant funds. This year’s funds will support four field trips to the Carolina Campus Community Garden. “We will take approximately 25 students from four different community organizations and neighborhoods to the local garden. The students will tour the garden and participate in interactive activities. The garden provides a fun, new setting for students to learn about fresh produce and how community gardens function.” Students will participate in a number of hands-on gardening stations that teach them about harvesting sweet potatoes, composting, mulching beds with shredded leaves, weeding beds, and pollination. They will plant seeds in a pot to take home and grow.
$1,860 for PORCH’s proposed continuation and expansion of their nutritional education project—PORCH Cooks. “PORCH Cooks aims to increase healthy, fresh food consumption by ensuring families know how to prepare the fresh food they receive through the Food for Families program. With each month’s food bags, our families receive new recipe pages for their PORCH Cooks cookbooks along with the spices necessary for recipe preparation. Recipes are developed through collaboration between nutrition and
culinary professionals, and are based on preferences expressed by the recipients in focus groups and surveys.” This year’s grant funds will be used to provide PORCH Cooks cookbooks for an additional 30 families and to provide new monthly recipes and healthy eating tips and guidelines to the families continuing from last year’s program.