Chilling for Good---Cold Storage Mini-Grant Awards!

Chilling for Good --- Cold Storage Mini-Grant Awards!

San Diego Food System Alliance is pleased announce that five local food recovery agencies have been selected as Cold Storage Mini-Grant Awardees: Vista Community Clinic, Community Resource Center, Heaven’s Windows, Wesley Community Services Center, and Catholic Charities (College area).

This project is being implemented through a partnership with San Diego Food Bank, Feeding San Diego, and Superfood Drive, with generous funding by an anonymous donor of the San Diego Foundation.

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Each of these five agency awardees will receive a two-door glass-front refrigeration unit (50 cubic foot capacity, 32”x50” footprint, such as the Everest Refrigeration Model No. EMGR48 or EBGR2) in order to increase recovery of fresh foods and produce, avoid landfilling of wholesome, edible foods, and increase food distribution programs for those in need.

Each agency will submit a short narrative with photographs within 6 months of receipt, demonstrating how this capacity building support helped with their food rescue and program efforts. We look forward to sharing these success stories and lessons learned.

Awardee Highlights:

Vista Community Clinic (VCC) currently serves a diverse population of low income families in North County San Diego, currently serving 180 people per month in three programs: The Dad’s Club, Youth Development, and the First 5 Steps program. With the addition of this refrigeration unit VCC will be able to become a fresh rescue partner, feed more families, and reduce food waste. This is in alignment with their efforts to promote healthy living and eating across all of their programming.  

Community Resource Center (CRC) is a current fresh rescue partner with the San Diego Food Bank and Feeding San Diego, serving 1400 people per month, including homeless and families. CRC sees a current unmet need for food in the north coastal community it serves and will be able to increase fresh food recovery from additional grocery stores with the new refrigeration unit, allowing them to serve the needs of additional people in their community.

Heaven’s Windows is a current fresh rescue partner with the San Diego Food Bank, and has recently moved into a new space in east San Diego County---into what is referred to as a food desert for fresh fruit and vegetables. They see increased demand in their new space and look to provide more fresh and wholesome foods to the community beyond the current 60-80 families per day, 300 families per month, and 60 prepared meals to seniors with the addition of this new refrigeration unit.

Wesley Community Services Center has a growing food rescue program with a stated aim to “aid the low and moderate-income people” within their community. They operate a Tuesday/Wednesday food pantry, serving 150 – 200 community members, and hot meals for seniors and families on Monday, Wednesday, Friday. They are a current fresh rescue partner, but will be able to expand recovery and distribution of fresh food with the addition of this cold storage refrigeration unit.

Catholic Charities (College area) is a designated emergency food provider by the San Diego Food Bank and 211, is open 5 days per week, and provides food to over 800 households monthly. With the addition of this commercial refrigeration unit, Catholic Charities will be better equipped to handle the 1000+ pounds of food donated to the center each week, and will be able to recover and serve more fresh and wholesome food as a fresh rescue partner with the San Diego Food Bank.

Post by Barbara Hamilton, Director of Strategic Initiatives