Select a Language

Close Window

Can we use your Parking Lot?

July 29, 2020

Partnership emerges to help people in Wayne County

According to Feeding America, 7,230 children are food insecure and the overall rate of food insecurity is 16.6%. This year with COVID-19 more families and many senior citizens are struggling with putting food on the table. In Wayne County, 16.9% is 65 years old or over and many of them do not qualify to receive government assistance.

The Three in One Family Center non-profit organization reached out to Wayne County Cooperative Extension and the Wayne Community College to request the use of the parking lot to start a USDA Farmers Feeding Families Food box program food distribution site. A partnership was forged that provides food, educational materials, and resource connections to the recipients. Cooperative Extension advertises the distribution in English and Spanish. They also provide signage, educational resources, assistance with logistics, and connect this activity with other agencies and organizations in the community. Each Monday, participants receive a box of produce and educational Harvest of the Month materials from Steps to Health, North Carolina State University’s SNAP-Ed program, food safety information from Safe Plates and hurricane preparedness literature from North Carolina State Extension.

Incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis

During the month of June, 225,100 pounds of produce were distributed, and more than 7,500 families were served with this project. According to participants, they are using their vegetables and fruits to prepare juices, smoothies, salads, and roasted vegetables. Many participants are learning about Cooperative Extension and the nutrition education and food safety resources that are available. The participants are using the handouts to learn new ways to prepare and preserve their produce and a few recipients became volunteers to support this community project! The success of this activity created an opportunity to connect people and resources to open a Summer Meals Program in a limited resources area where the majority of the population is Latino.

For more information about Cooperative Extension, click on your county on the map on our homepage!

Thanks to Michelle Estrada, Family and Consumer Sciences Extension Agent, Wayne County Center for providing this story.