Gov. Kay Ivey has awarded nearly $400,000 to help provide Alabamians with improved access to fresh and healthy foods.
The 13 grants were awarded by the governor under the state’s Healthy Food Financing Program. The program offers assistance to help food providers, like food banks, with the resources needed to supply healthy foods to people in their service area.
“Many Alabamians even in this day and time live in areas where fresh, nutritious foods are not easily available or that may be beyond their means to obtain,” Gov. Ivey said. “This program helps fill in those gaps by providing food service programs with the equipment, transportation and other resources to supply foods in those needed areas.”
The program was created by the Alabama Legislature in 2015 and is designed to improve access to fresh food for Alabamians who live in “food deserts” through food banks, farmer’s markets or retail grocery stores.
The Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs is administering the grants.
“Community providers of healthy foods are often on shoestring budgets and need assistance in meeting the demand in their areas,” ADECA Director Kenneth Boswell said. “This program helps provide those resources they need, and ADECA is pleased to join Gov. Ivey in meeting those needs.”
Those awarded grants are:
New Life Seventh-day Adventist Church (Huntsville) – $50,000 to renovate and expand its food pantry and purchase new equipment to serve people in Madison County.
One God Ministries (Decatur) – $12,500 to purchase a food-storage building for its food pantry operation serving the Limestone County area.
Community Food Bank of Central Alabama (Birmingham) – $36,369 to provide a refrigerated cooler and other equipment needs for a donated truck that will help the organization to continue food delivery. The food bank serves Jefferson, Blount, Calhoun, Cherokee, Clay, Cleburne, Etowah, Shelby, St. Clair, Talladega, Walker and Winston counties.
PEER Inc. (Birmingham) – $30,000 to provide kitchen and mobile food equipment for its community kitchen and mobile grocery store serving east Jefferson County
Smithfield Community Development Corp. (Birmingham) – $25,589 to purchase a delivery van and related equipment needed to fulfill food programs for both adults and children in Birmingham and other areas of Jefferson County.
Talya Ball Ministries (Aliceville) – $35,000 to expand a food pantry and purchase equipment for the non-profit group that serves Pickens and Greene counties.
Children of the Village Network (Livingston) – $10,000 to purchase a commercial walk-in freezer for its food programs serving Sumter County.
A Vision to Feed Ministry (Valley) – $11,869 for building rehabilitation and equipment for its food ministry which serves east Alabama.
Helping Hand Food Ministry (Montgomery) – $23,000 to purchase a refrigerated truck and loading equipment for the non-profit organization’s food distribution program in Macon County.
Edmundite Missions (Selma) -$40,000 to purchase a van to provide food delivery services to residents in Lowndes County.
Orrville Farmer’s Market (Orrville) – $25,000 to purchase a refrigerated van to transport fresh produce to the market which is located in an area which is defined by U.S. Department of Agriculture standards as a food desert.
Blackbelt & Central Alabama Housing Authority (Camden) – $50,000 to renovate a food pantry/farmers market and purchase a truck for food delivery in Dallas and Wilcox counties.
Lifeline Outreach Ministries (Grove Hill) – $50,000 to expand its food distribution program by establishing a food pantry in the city of Jackson. Funds will be used to purchase equipment and make needed renovations to a city-owned building.
ADECA administers an array of programs supporting law enforcement and traffic safety, economic development, energy conservation, water resource management and recreation development.