KMVT- Community Food Assessment Information

Study:14 percent of Blaine County needs assistance with meals

HAILEY, Id. ( KMVT / KSVT ) – A group of Blaine County organizations recently completed a community food assessment, focusing on food production, consumption trends, food waste and recovery, and food security in the Wood River Valley.

The study revealed about 14 percent of Blaine County residents are food insecure, meaning they need extra assistance with meals.

“Within this generalized 14ish percent of food insecure population in Blaine County, there are quite big differences as you move between the cities here. So Sun Valley has the lowest number at about 4.9 percent, Ketchum moves up to about 9.4 percent. We have some different numbers for north of Ketchum and mid-valley, I’ll just stick with the main ones. Hailey bumps up to 17.2 percent, and Bellevue moves up to 19. And then you go down to Carey and you’re up at 50 percent. So there is a vast difference even within our average number of what food insecurity looks like in each of these communities,” Lynea Petty, Food Production Manager, The Hunger Coalition.

The community food bank garden, called The Hope Garden, is located just outside the Blaine County Court House in Hailey. The Hunger Coalition uses it to grow fresh produce for its clients and also gives its clients and opportunity to learn to grow food on their own.

Click here to view the news report from KMVT.

Appreciation Party 2015

Hope Garden Appreciation Party 2015

Penny Mazzola and Gay Riley enjoying the Appreciation Party at The Hope Garden.

Cheers to our dedicated donors and volunteers who came to the 2015 Appreciation Party at The Hope Garden!  It was a party dedicated to thanking everyone for their support to us this past year.

We also welcomed back Executive Director, Jeanne Liston, from her 3-month sabbatical and said goodbye to our Garden Education Manager, Hallie Reikowsky, who is off on a new adventure to Sandpoint.

Burgers were flipped, salads tossed and drinks flowed on a beautiful evening at The Hope Garden. Thank you to everyone who came to celebrate YOU and all you’ve helped us accomplish this year!

Check out the photos below of the 2015 party!

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Area schools visit The Hope Garden!

This May, The Hope Garden had 475 students come through for tours in two days. Garden Manager, (and Hailey Elementary para-pro) Hallie Reikowsy led the tours, engaging kids with information about the healthy fruits and vegetables grown in The Hope Garden and also information about The Hunger Coalition, its clients and The Hunger Coalition’s mission. There was also a scavenger hunt, where the kids looked to find treasures in the garden.

Thanks Miss Hallie for your dedication and green thumb!
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WOW Students Make an Impact!

The WOW students picked two projects for The Hunger Coalition in 2015. One was to raise money to help purchase seeding starts for The Hunger Coalition’s greenhouse that will later get planted in The Hope Garden. All food produced in The Hope Garden is directly distributed through our Mobile Food Bank Distributions. Student funding helped us purchase seeds, soil, pots, greenhouse maintenance and other materials for The Hope Garden.

The other project was to raise money for “Daily Bites” program. Daily Bites makes yummy snacks available to all students who experience a rumble in their belly because they are hungry or forgo their snack at home. A Daily Bites snack pantry is in each of the public schools in our county. The money raised will help purchase snacks for the pantries so students who are in need of extra food can ask an adult for a snack. This food will help children keep their energy levels up and minds focused on the learning they need to do during the day.

Thank you to all the WOW students who helped raise this money to support hungry kids in our valley and also support the beautiful Hope Garden which helps feed our community members! You are truly an inspiration to all of us!

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THC 2015 Annual Goals

Here at The Hunger Coalition, we have weekly strategic-planning meetings that include topics like: how to improve overall as an organization, how to reach more people in need and how to continue providing healthy, nutritious food (and education) to clients. Here are our 11 (we couldn’t keep it to 10!) goals for 2015. We often shoot for the stars, knowing that it’s OK to fail, if we’ve tried our best.

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  1. Identify the true number of food insecure individuals in Blaine County through
    the Community Food Assessment.
  2. Through Daily Bites, identify high need students and inform 220 of them about additional THC services as needed, with at least 22 accessing additional support.
  3. Create and implement an awareness campaign that helps us increase our numbers served to 3,700 people total.
  4. Increase healthy summer meals and snacks served to children by 9% through our Summer Food Program (Kid’s Café, Lunch in the Park & Daily Bites) through increased marketing.
  5. Work with school district administration, teachers, school social workers and partner advocates to increase the number of students enrolled in our Snack Pack Program to 200 students.
  6. Ensure 100% of mothers who reach out to us have access to vital nutrition for their infants during the first year of their lives through our Infant Formula Initiative.
  7. Provide a minimum of 1,750 pounds of fresh, locally grown food through The Hope Garden to feed the hungry through our Mobile Food Bank.
  8. Educate 500 children up to the age of 19 and at risk of food insecurity on nutrition education through education programs and tours of The Hope Garden and Food Bank warehouse.
  9. Rescue a minimum of 4,250 pounds of locally grown fruits and vegetables through our Gleaning Program to feed the hungry.
  10. Reassess food boxes regarding portion and quantity of food, referencing My Plate standards, to ensure adequate amounts per each family size and increase if needed.
  11. Ensure 90% of people who respond to the annual nutrition survey report that the food we distribute meets or exceeds their nutritional needs.