Healthy Foods Leadership Network

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Catalyst Projects > Coalition Capacity Building > Healthy Foods Leadership Network

Description:
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Through the Catalyst Plan process, we identified a wealth of healthy food assets in the Marlborough program, in the form of healthy food leaders, hunger relief programs and educational programs,  many of whom did not know about each other.  The Healthy Foods Access team, which formed to advise the planning process, saw a clear opportunity to create a strong leadership network amongst these leading programs in Marlborough. Working together, a network of healthy food leaders in Marlborough can coordinate and strengthen their efforts, bolster awareness of their programs through cross-promotion develop a common action plan and apply for funding to support collaborative projects that move forward the collective priorities for healthier food in Marlborough.

The Healthy Foods Access advisory team formed the foundation for the Healthy Foods Leadership Network.  Through the plan process, the team identified an opportunity to develop sub-networks focused on hunger relief and food production. The hunger relief network can build resources such as a local directory to connect and refer services, learn from each other’s models to strengthen services, support ongoing communication between hunger relief coordinators, promote each other’s work and collaborate on joint projects such as a community garden to provide fresh food through their pantries. A network of growers can get together for mutual learning and support, sharing of food, and setting goals and priorities for food production. Get Growing’s assessment of Land Bank Lots in the neighborhood provides a reference for potential production sites in Marlborough.  Harvest festivals, workshops, garden of the month awards, garden tours, and potluck meals are community celebrations that could be hosted by the growers network and integrated with the work of Marlborough Village Community GardenHealthy Food Awareness and Education Hub, and the Green Infrastructure Growers mentorship program.

Additional information to implement this opportunity below:
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1.    Establish Leadership network  | November 2013- January 2014

  1. Determine meeting frequency, decision making process, communication process, how to stay connected to Marlborough Community Coalition (MCC)
  2. Identify co-champions to coordinate meetings, lead communication, maintain integration with MCC
  3. Establish champions to lead hunger network, growers network, workplan development/fundraising, target green, Marlborough elementary, early projects
  4. Connect with all healthy food assets in Marlborough, invite participation

Co-champions: Diane Hershberger and Aimee Alderman

2.    Establish hunger network | November 2013- January 2014

  1. Identify co-champions to coordinate meetings, lead communication, maintain integration with leadership network
  2. Connect with all hunger agencies in Marlborough, invite participation
  3. Develop asset directory of hunger relief agencies/programs, contacts, services
  4. Meet with network to identify collaboration/coordination opportunities
  5. Set short and long term goals, incorporate into leadership network workplan
  6. Hunger network is structured as a subcommittee of the leadership network

Champion: Steve Quinlin

Establish growers network | November 2013- January 2014

  1. Identify co-champions to coordinate meetings, lead communication, maintain integration with leadership network
  2. Connect with existing and potential food producers in Marlborough, invite participation
  3. Meet with network to identify opportunities to collaborate in 2014-15 to expand or establish community gardens, mentorship and job training opportunities, coordination with target green and Marlborough village
  4. Set short and long term goals, incorporate into leadership network workplan
  5. Growers network is structured as a subcommittee of the leadership network

Champion: Diane Hershberger

3.    Set goals, develop workplan for top plan priorities | December 2013- January 2014

  1. Identify champion to lead workplan development
  2. Network development- leadership development, hunger/grower networks
  3. Awareness and education campaign
  4. Community gardens, youth programs, mentorship/job training, target green water catchment/sidewalks, Marlborough school development
  5. Incorporate other opportunities identified through Catalyst planning process

4.    Connect with aligned initiatives/resources |  November 2013- January 2014

  1. Champions meet with representatives of other initiatives to identify opportunities for collaboration, support, resources
  2. See suggested alignments for all opportunities

 5.    Move forward with ripe fruit to establish early success | Starting November 2013

  1. Pop up Mobile Bread Stand
  2. Shamrock Healthy Corner Store Initiative

6.    Apply for funding to support implementation of workplan/goals  | Starting January 2014

  1. Identify champion to lead fundraising/grant writing
  2. Work with MCC and KCHK Healthy Kids Initiative for support in applying to Health Care Foundation of Greater Kansas City (Submit applicant defined grant early 2014)
  3. Leadership network identifies and pursues other funding sources

Champions and their roles:
The Healthy Food Leadership Network is already moving toward implementation, and connecting network participants through an implementation strategy. Contact Co-Champions Diane Hershberger or Aimee Alderman to learn more.

Partner organizations:
Founding members of the Healthy Foods Leadership Network that participated in the Catalyst Plan project include individuals and organizations such as:

  1. Diane Hershberger, Stony Crest Farm, Marlborough Community Coalition Board
  2. Aimee Alderman, Parents as Teachers, Center School District
  3. Steve Quinlin, Marlborough Pride Resident, Christ the King Food Pantry Volunteer
  4. Pat Duncan, Grace Baptist Pantry Coordinator
  5. Thomas Brown, Grace Baptist Pantry Volunteer
  6. Richard Williams, Site Coordinator, Center Elementary LINC after school program
  7. Joyce Walker, Marlborough East Co-President, Marlborough East Community Garden
  8. Steve Walker, Marlborough East Co-President, Marlborough East Community Garden
  9. Pastor Hubert McDonald, Evangel Spiritual Temple
  10. Armond McDonald, Youth Ministries, Evangel Spiritual Temple
  11. Julie Hodges, Marlborough East resident, Marlborough Elementary School focus
  12. Jim Douglas, Marlborough Resident, Job Training/Business focus
  13. Angela Banks, Marlborough Resident, Target Green Co-lead, youth programs
  14. Reginald Newsom, Marlborough Resident, Target Green Co-lead, youth programs and job training

Aligned initiatives that have been working with the Healthy Foods Leadership Network through the Catalyst plan process include:

  1. Get Growing KC was a leading community partner and honorary planning team member for the Healthy Foods Access component of the Catalyst Plan. The Get Growing team conducted an assessment of food production opportunities in the Marlborough neighborhoods, and led the plan process to identify priorities and opportunities to increase food production in Marlborough neighborhoods.  Get Growing offers ongoing services such as technical assistance, workshops, presentations and mini grants. Contact Katherine Kelly  to learn more.
  2. Fresh Bread KC-  Baker and Chef Sean Starowitz is partnering with the Healthy Foods Leadership Network to bring a mobile Pop- up Bread Stand to Marlborough neighborhoods. Contact Sean for more information
  3. Fresh Food Corridor Dr. Robyne Stevenson is a healthy foods advocate who promotes healthy food access in food desert neighborhoods through multiple strategies, including promotion of fresh food sources, shopping services, and food preparation education.
  4. Communities Creating Opportunity works with faith congregations in community to discover, develop and direct the power of people to build a better quality of life for their families. CCO offers a toolkit to support leadership development and healthy food access efforts within faith congregations, and is working with the Regional Equity Network on an action plan to improve transportation- and through it access to healthy food- in Kansas City. Contact Kathryn Evans, Community Organizer, to learn more.
  5. The KCMO Health Department partnered with Mid America Regional Council on the Healthy Corner Stores Initiative, supporting corner stores in their efforts to increase healthy food access in urban core neighborhoods. A Healthy Corner Store team is working with the “Shamrock” corner store at 85th and Woodland to increase healthy food offerings at the store. Contact Sarah Worthington to learn more.

Several other community initiatives working to increase healthy food access in the Kansas City area are recommended as partners throughout project opportunities- these organizations are also considered partners to the Healthy Foods Leadership Network.

Funding sources or supportive programs:
To support implementation of healthy food priorities in the Marlborough Neighborhoods, the Healthy Foods Leadership Network can apply to Kansas City area funders focused on building capacity for healthy living in Kansas City. A coordinated proposal that encompasses a number of healthy foods priorities could support the leadership network in making forward progress. The Health Care Foundation of Greater Kansas City and Menorah Legacy Foundation’s Healthy for Life program are ongoing funding sources that support this kind of work.

Truman Medical Centers, Healthy Harvest Mobile Market

Get Growing KC, mini grant program

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