By Francie Lin, GFN Writer-in-Residence I think everyone would rather forget the early pandemic days…
The second annual Valley Grows Day is upon us! We’re honored to be part of this collaborative giving day that unites and supports local organizations in the Pioneer Valley who share a deep commitment to growing food, addressing food access and insecurity, fostering a strong connection to the land, and working to build a more inclusive and sustainable food system.
This year, with the COVID-19 pandemic affecting our local farms’ ability to sell their produce and products, and members of our community’s ability to access food, Valley Grows Day gifts to Grow Food Northampton will directly support our work on the just-implemented Community Food Distribution Project. This emergency project, a collaborative effort between Grow Food Northampton, Northampton Survival Center, and Community Action Pioneer Valley, is providing income to our local farmers as we purchase produce and other farm products from them to provide food weekly to over one thousand Northampton residents five days a week.
Grow Food Northampton is aiming to raise $30,000 through Valley Grows Day. Because of the generosity of a just-formed funder collaborative called Local Roots Care, led by Northampton residents Dr. Martin Wohl and Marisa Labozzetta, the first $15,000 raised on Valley Grows Day will be matched dollar for dollar.
These funds will help to support our Community Food Distribution Project, already in action supporting our local farmers and delivering food to over 1,000 people each week. Your donation will also support our other important food access work that we do at Grow Food Northampton through our Grow Food Shares programming, including SNAP Shares at Crimson and Clover Farm, Neighborhood Markets mobile market, and SNAP Matching at Tuesday Market.
Food access and farm organizations across the Pioneer Valley are rapidly responding to the COVID-19 pandemic which is exacerbating food insecurity in our region and around the nation. Many will be disproportionately impacted by this virus including low income individuals and people of color. Show your support for farming and food justice in our Valley by donating to the local food access, farming and food justice organizations working to ensure that the food we grow here, reaches those most in need now!
Even in the most difficult times, our Valley can thrive because our Valley Grows!
Please check out our 2020 Valley Grows Partners and consider supporting them, too:
Gardening The Community
Grow Food Northampton
Pioneer Valley Workers Center
Seeds of Solidarity
Visit ValleyGrows.org to learn about each partner organization, how they are working to address food insecurity and how your gift can help!