Community Food Security

[under construction]

Mountain Roots recognizes that building Community Food Security starts with teaching a community how to meet its own food needs. We focus on efforts that engage key target groups: 

the Hispanic Community,

Cora Indian populations, 

the food insecure (often low-income),

and the food ‘unaware’.  


The project helps connect the needs of these target groups with existing community resources that meet those needs, and helps to create new opportunities, resources, and relationships where needed.  We build and revitalize local community through collaboration, foster social justice, honor and celebrate diverse cultures and traditions by bringing people from different backgrounds together to work and learn in our local food system.

 

PROJECT VISION: Gunnison Valley Community Food Assessment

A Community Food Assessment is a powerful way to tell the story of what’s happening with food in a community based on the collection of data, reports, and feedback from residents. Food assessments examine a broad range of food related problems and successes to improve a community’s food system. Through such assessments, interested community members can work together to research what is happening with a community’s food system, to communicate those findings, and to support policy changes based on those findings.

Information gathered from a CFA can be used to affect change through building community awareness, mobilizing stakeholders for action, and policy and programmatic change. Information is used to develop programs that address food insecurity, public health issues, water scarcity, unemployment and environmental impacts of fossil fuel consumption related to our food system.


There are four modules in the Community Food Assessment Framework:  Production, Distribution, Processing, and Access.

We have decided to focus first on the ACCESS module.

Topics of interest include:

    a.What is our Food Environment?  A profile of community food resources

    b.Are our Residents Food Secure?  Assessment of household food security

    c .How Do We Get to Our Food?  Assessment of food resource geographical accessibility

    d.How much does Food Cost in Our Community?  Assessment of food affordability

    e.Government & Community Food Support Programs.  Assessment of government policies and community programs that support food access and local food production


The intent of this project is to build capacity for Mountain Roots Food Project to develop ‘specific deliverables’ that are directed toward the community’s needs. In addition, the project explores the feasibility of expanding local agriculture and local markets to address food insecurity, public health issues, water scarcity, unemployment, and the environmental impacts of fossil fuel consumption related to our food system. The Community Food Assessment will provide valuable, specific information about the food security, access, and resiliency in Gunnison Valley will be used to:

a)Inform the development of the Mountain Roots Access & Outreach Program. The Access & Outreach program seeks to build food security in Gunnison Valley by increasing access to food (expanding local agriculture and local markets) and educating and engaging new audiences.

b)Act as a model for the other watershed coalitions in the Western Hardrock Team and/or other food or health organizations in Region 10 to complete comparable assessments, which can be compiled into a Regional picture.

c)Inform program decisions of other agencies in Gunnison Valley (such as Public Health, Multicultural Resource Office, Office of Resource Efficiency, etc.)

d)Direct the usage of our water resources to economic opportunities in tune with maintaining the health of our ecosystems and those of our downstream partners.


The Gunnison Valley Community Food Assessment will utilize Spark Policy’s Food Assessment Framework. The Food Security, Resiliency & Access Module includes a variety of indicators that capture the ability of  residents within a community to access and secure healthy foods on a frequent and consistent basis.  This module is intended to arm the state of Colorado as well as communities within the state with comprehensive measures to understand issues of food access, food security, and community resiliency.

info@mountainrootsfoodproject.org        PO Box 323 Gunnison, CO 81230

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MOUNTAIN ROOTS

FARM TO SCHOOL         GARDENS        CSA        FOOD SECURITY: ACCESS & OUTREACH