Posted on February 22, 2022
In a recent application for our Meal Site Assistant role, an applicant wrote “food has the power to unite individuals and foster community.” She really hit the nail on the head and got me thinking deeply about the work we are doing at the Franklin County Community Meals Program.
The world we live in was built with inequities and systemic problems that create barriers to accessing resources. Barriers for people we serve include:
Food insecurity isn’t a problem of it’s own. It’s embedded in these systems; in poverty, in barriers, in isolation. As a community, it is our job to help break down these barriers and design new systems by building networks of connection. The ‘Community Meals Program’ lives and breathes community. We serve as a hub for engagement and impact, working with the whole community to build more resources! By joining us you can be part of solving these problems in your community. We connect individuals, businesses, schools, churches, social and mission driven clubs, non-profits, youth and more. We can’t really change the world, we can’t really support each other unless we think of each other as neighbors and partners in solving problems and taking care of each other.
This year we are proud of the connections we’ve made, the resources we have built and the way we have seen our community show up for each other.
Over the past 2 years, Covid has penetrated every aspect of how we do our work from the variety of people we serve, the amount of people in need, the way that we prepare and distribute food, to the way we organize and more. We have shifted and expanded, developing a response based on the needs of the people we serve.
The pandemic also increased the complexity of how we do our work. From volunteer recruitment, to outreach, to adapting our models, we have grown to respond to these changes and needs.
In 2021, we focused on expansion to ensure access. We also assessed our ability to grow and how to ensure this growth would be sustainable. FCCMP is at the forefront of taking on rural food insecurity in our region with programs from Northfield all the way to remote towns in the North Quabbin. We know we need to grow to holistically tackle this systemic problem. We do this by not only providing resources to people in need, but by uniting individuals and fostering community around food! Forging ahead into 2022, we invite the community to continue to join us as we transform our work to be more efficient, effective, community centered and impact driven.