slider
slider
slider
slider
slider
slider
slider
slider
slider
slider

How We Fight Hunger

Food Bank

These are the programs and initiatives we’ve established to help us fight hunger. They target everyone from school children to families to seniors. Here you can learn more about these programs — and how we’re working to prevent hunger each and every day.

Foodlink provides food to more than 500 partner agencies. We provide food to emergency food organizations such as food pantries, soup kitchens and shelters.  We also assist non-emergency programs such as group homes and senior centers, helping nonprofit agencies save vital dollars on their food budget so their scarce resources can be redirected to their programs.

There’s enough food to go around. Foodlink’s 80,000-square-foot warehouse can hold 5 million pounds of food a day. Our freezer is capable of holidng one million pounds.  Our cooler can hold 400,000 pounds.  Each day, our trucks travel 1,260 miles.  A collaborative effort of Foodlink employees, volunteers and community members work to help ensure that mouths are fed and bellies are full.

BackPack Program™

What is the BackPack Program?

Nearly 78,000 children in our 10-county service area received free or reduced-price lunch at school. But when school is closed during weekends and holidays, many of those children go hungry. The BackPack Program from Foodlink provides children in need with bags of nutritious food they can discreetly take home and easily prepare on their own.

During 2014-2015, we served nearly 1,800 children a week in 80 schools.

Good nutrition is critical to good health and success at school. Children who don’t get enough to eat often have:

  • Trouble concentrating
  • Lower Math and English scores
  • Difficulty interacting with peers
  • Trouble finishing tests in time
  • Lower graduation rates

How you can help

Donate to the program—just $200 feeds one child for an entire school year. That’s just $5 a week! You can choose to sponsor the BackPack Program at many levels: from covering one child for a month all the way up to sponsoring an entire school. 100% of your monetary donations go directly to buying, packing, and distributing food to hungry kids. Contact Laura Sugarwala at 585-413-4079, lsugarwala@foodlinkny.org for more information.

“I feel happy about the BackPack Program because it makes me and my family feel happy. Thank you for the BackPack Program!”-BackPack Participant

Become a BackPack site and help hungry kids in your school. Thinking about becoming a BackPack site? Some things to consider are: how students in need will be identified, how you will receive and store BackPacks, how they can be distributed discreetly, and who will be in charge of the program. Contact Laura Sugarwala at 585-413-4079 for more information. .

“More and more people are becoming aware of how this small program is making a great impact.  By the growing number of different volunteers from adults to children they are seeing first hand how many kids we are able to help and how the Backpack Program makes a difference for so many of our kids.”-District Coordinator

Mobile Pantry

Our mobile pantry is a pantry on wheels, filled with nutritious food items, that travels to locations in rural and under-served areas of Foodlink’s 10-county service area. Volunteers from the host sites help set up and serve clients. Our mobile pantries allow us to engage those most in need and extend our service into harder-to-reach food deserts.  To find a mobile pantry near you, please call Lifeline by dialing 2-1-1.

For more information contact: Morgan McKenzie at 585-413-4069.

 

Freshwise Kitchen

Nourishing kids with good food.

We provide kids with hot, nutritious meals so they can spend their time playing and learning—not worrying about where their next meal will come from.

Kids Cafe

The Kids Cafe Program was established to provide healthy meals for children in a safe after school environment. Currently, Foodlink provides healthy meals and snacks to 3,500 children every weekday during the school year at 58 Kids Cafe sites.

Contact us

The 2015-2016 Kids Cafe member application is available here. For more information contact Claire Savini, RD LDN at (585) 254-4423 or by emailing csavini@foodlinkny.org. All applications must include a copy of OCFS licensing.

Summer Meals

Freshwise Kitchen’s Summer Food Service Program (SFSP, also known as Summer Meals) provides meals to children who eat free or reduced-price lunch during the school year. Over the summer, however, these children are at risk of hunger. For seven years, Freshwise has partnered with the NYS Department of Education to ensure children eat at least one balanced meal every day in the summer. Locally, Summer Meals is a collaboration with the City of Rochester, Finger Lakes Health Systems Agency, Foodlink, the Rochester Area Community Foundation and the Rochester City School District. Summer Meals are available at these locations.  Families can also call 2-1-1 or go to www.healthikids.org to learn more.

Interested in becoming a Summer Meals site?  Fill out this application.  For more information, contact Claire Savini, RD LDN at (585) 254-4423 or by emailing csavini@foodlinkny.org.

Value-Added Processing

During the summer of 2012, we began a new initiative by implementing a value-added processing (VAP) program to extend the shelf life of local agricultural products. Our VAP program includes workforce development training as we teach individuals valuable skills in the preparing, processing, packaging, and marketing of raw local products. The final products of this program—a trained workforce and shelf-stable products—will benefit both producers and consumers in our regional food system.

Some value-added processing is already in place. For example, local apples are washed, sliced, bagged, and distributed in individual serving sizes to schools in our region. Foodlink will be increasing our apple production and expanding to other products, such as squash puree, frozen blueberries and broccoli florets.

For more information, call (585) 254-4423.

 

Food Access Programs

Doing our part to provide healthy and affordable food to all.  We’re not just fighting hunger.  We’re building self-sustainability through improved food access.

 

Curbside Market

The Curbside Market is our farm stand on wheels. During the summer and fall months, two trucks are on the road, thanks to a grant from the Citizens Bank Growing Communities Initiative. The 18-foot truck visited more than 60 locations throughout Rochester and surrounding areas. The ideas is to bring fresh, affordable produce to areas in Rochester where fresh fruits and vegetables are not easily accessible. Cash, debit, EBT and WIC are all accepted.

Our winter schedule (below) runs from January 1st to March 31st (Download PDF)

NEW FOR 2016: Our Curbside Market will be available in outlying counties every Thursday morning through March, on a rotating schedule.  To view or print this schedule, please click here.

Curbside_Monroe_WINTER16_single

Interested in have our Curbside Market come to your next event? Fill out this request TODAY!

Urban Farm Stands

Access to fresh produce is key to fostering a healthy community. This summer, Foodlink is assisting with 10 farm stands throughout the City of Rochester. Local fruits and vegetables are available for purchase at affordable prices. Recipe cards are also available to plan meals. Produce can be purchased with cash, debit or EBT. Due to our seasonal weather, Urban Farm Stands only run during the months of July to October.

Community Store Initiative

Bringing new life to the neighborhood corner store, Foodlink unveiled a newly-remodeled “community store” in early 2015. Part of the food bank’s Community Store Initiative, Stop One Meat Market’s redesign focuses on fresh, affordable and nutritious foods. 

Stop One Meat Market, located at 352 Jay Street, was the first Community Store awarded funding through a competitive grant process. Foodlink oversaw several critical transformations in StopOne, including: completion of SNAP and WIC certifications, internal renovations, addition of new equipment, and a strategic marketing campaign aimed at making residents’ aware of the increased availability of fresh fruits and vegetables in their neighborhood. StopOne is now prepared to be a store that is an asset to the community’s health in the JOSANA neighborhood.

This initiative would not have been possible without the funding and support from several agencies.  The project was jumpstarted thanks to the support of Citizens Bank Foundation.  Additional funding came from the New York Healthy Food & Healthy Communities Fund via the Low Income Investment Fund.

The second store awarded funding through the Community Store Initiative was T&K Deli and Minimart, located at 479 Carter St. The redesign at T&K was completed in the spring of 2015.

Garden Project

At Foodlink, we are always working to increase and expand access to fresh, wholesome, and nutritious foods throughout our service area. We run many projects to achieve this goal, including the Garden Project, which links community gardens to the emergency food network, our series of urban farm stands, and our preliminary work on making corner stores healthier. The Garden Project also makes it possible for emergency food relief organizations to grow their own garden so that they can produce fresh fruits and vegetables to be used for emergency food recipients.

In addition, Foodlink helps facilitate an urban farm on Lexington Avenue. The farm serves dozens of households from the Nepalese refugee community in Rochester. There is also a 60-foot hoophouse in the space where we grow crops for Curbside Market as well as incubate plants for the Garden Project.

In 2015, we were grateful to receive:

Lexington Avenue community gardeners harvested an estimated 3,900 pounds of produce in 2015 and the hoop house yielded another 1,064 pounds. The other 25 Garden Project gardens raised a cumulative 10,000 pounds of produce for their host programs in 2015.

Partner agencies in 2015:

MONROE:
Baden Street Settlement
Berlin-Wilkins Block Club/ABC (136 Berlin St)
Berlin-Wilkins Block Club/ABC (246 Wilkins St)
Calvary St. Andrews
Cameron Community Ministries
Cathedral Community/Joseph’s Place
Charles Settlement House
IBERO – Amapola House
Lexington Avenue Urban Farm & Hoop House
Mission Share
Northwest Neighborhood Outreach Center
Salvation Army
South West Triangle Neighborhood Association
Southwest Ecumenical Ministries/St. Stephens
St. George’s Episcopal Church/Hilton-Parma Food Shelf
St. Mark’s and St. John’s Episcopal Church Garden of E.D.E.N (1245 Culver Road)
St. Mark’s and St. John’s Garden of E.D.E.N. #2 (622 Merchants Road)
St. Mark’s and St. John’s Garden of E.D.E.N. #3 (1403 E. Main St)
St. Peter’s Kitchen

ONTARIO:
Canandaigua Churches In Action
Geneva Salvation Army

YATES:
Food For the Needy

LIVINGSTON:
Zion House

WAYNE:
Newark Rotary/Wayne County Catholic Charities

ORLEANS:
Community Action of Genesee (Albion)
Community Action of Genesee (Batavia)

This project is open to Foodlink member agencies. For more information, contact Nathaniel Mich at 585-413-4071 or nmich@foodlinkny.org.

Washington Square Farmers Market

Foodlink, in partnership with 8 local vendors, hosts its Farmers Market at Washington Square Park in downtown Rochester every Wednesday this summer.  Customers can enjoy delicious produce from local farms on their lunch break.  Other market favorites include baked goods, nuts, maple syrup and eggs.  The farmer’s market runs from June – September on Wednesdays from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

 

 

Nutrition Education

Teaching nutritious eating for a lifetime of healthy habits.

Individuals in our community who have difficulty accessing an adequate amount and variety of safe foods are at the highest risk for negative health outcomes like obesity and diabetes. Children and adults who do not have enough healthy food can also suffer from inability to focus and may perform poorly in academic settings.

Foodlink is committed not only to providing food, but helping individuals learn more about what they are eating so that they can take control over their own health and wellness.  Foodlink uses the Dietary Guidelines for Americans and My Plate in sourcing, stocking, and distributing food, as well as in nutrition education classes.

Cooking Matters™

Foodlink is proud to be a lead partner of Share Our Strength’s Cooking Matters, a national program that works to make sure all kids have the healthy food they need every day.

Cooking Matters empowers families at risk of hunger with the skills, knowledge and confidence to make healthy and affordable meals. Alongside volunteer culinary and nutrition experts, course participants learn to select nutritious and low-cost ingredients, and prepare them in ways that provide the best nourishment possible to their families.

Courses available through Foodlink include:

  • Cooking Matters for Adults
  • Cooking Matters for Kids
  • Cooking Matters for Families
  • Cooking Matters for Teens
  • Cooking Matters for Child Care Professionals
  • Cooking Matters for Parents

Cooking Matters now offers programming in Wayne and Ontario counties! Contact us to learn more.

Volunteer for Cooking Matters

Chef Instructors provide leadership for course curriculum. Volunteers must have background in the culinary arts and/or restaurant experience.

Nutrition Educators help facilitate and guide the group. Registered dietitians, those with a nutrition or food science background, and dietetic interns are encouraged to apply.

Class Assistants provide support and organizational assistance throughout the 6-week course.

Interpreters and Translators are a key source between the course instructors and participants who are non-English speaking and/or from the deaf community.

Photo and Video Journalists will attend 2-3 Cooking Matters classes and produce high quality images and/or a video segment for marketing use.

If you are interested in volunteering, please send us a volunteer application.

Cooking Matters at the Store

Cooking Matters at the Store is an interactive grocery store tour for that teaches low-income adults how to shop for healthy, affordable food. Participants learn to find whole grains, buy fruits and vegetables on a tight budget, compare unit prices, and read food labels. Tours are offered in English and Spanish throughout our 10-county service area to groups of low-income adults. If you or a group is interested in attending please call Mikaela Bozza, Cooking Matters AmeriCorps Member at (585) 413-4094 or email mbozza@foodlinkny.org

Contact us

To learn more about becoming a host site, volunteer opportunities, or signing up for classes, contact Patrick Lynch, Cooking Matters Coordinator at (585) 413-4068 or email plynch@foodlinkny.org.

For more information about Share Our Strength’s National Program, visit www.cookingmatters.org or www.strength.org.

Popular Cooking Matters Recipes:
Southwestern Black Eyed Pea Corn Salad
Turkey Tacos
Sweet Potato Fries

Just Say Yes to Fruits and Vegetables (JSY)

Foodlink offers the Just Say Yes to Fruits and Vegetables (JSY) Program to emergency agencies. The JSY Program began in New York in 1997 in order to provide nutrition education and obesity prevention programming to low-income clients of the emergency food network. It is funded through the state Department of Health and USDA’s SNAP-Ed Project. SNAP-Ed supports nutrition education for people eligible for SNAP (formerly known as food stamps).

The mission of JSY is to work with organizations that serve food insecure populations to improve the health and nutritional status of SNAP-eligible residents in New York. We do this through promoting fruit and vegetable consumption and empowering clients to make healthy choices.

Foodlink offers JSY classes to our emergency agencies, like food pantries and soup kitchens. Each class includes a nutrition lesson and activity, a cooking demonstration, and healthy recipes to taste. To request a class, contact contact Gretchen Adams (JSY Nutritionist) at 585-413-4049 or email gadams@foodlinkny.org. To learn more, visit www.jsyfruitveggies.org.

JSY at the Market

Each summer, Foodlink brings the “JSY at the Market” program to the Rochester Public Market. A nutritionist offers free cooking demonstrations at the Public Market every Thursday and Saturday. Nearly 1,000 people participated in the workshops this summer! The cooking demos provided accessible uses for all the delicious fruits and vegetables available at the market and are targeted to individuals and families who utilize SNAP. For more information, contact Gretchen Adams at 585-413-4049 or email gadams@foodlinkny.org.

Fingerlakes Eat Smart New York Program

Finger Lakes Eat Smart New York is a program funded by the SNAP-Ed program whose mission is to improve the likelihood that persons eligible for SNAP will make healthy choices within a limited budget and choose active lifestyles consistent with the current Dietary Guidelines for Americans and MyPlate. Our primary goals are for persons eligible for SNAP to eat more fruits and vegetables, drink fewer sugar-sweetened beverages, exercise more and balance calories as part of a healthy lifestyle.

Foodlink provides nutrition education activities and resources in Rochester as part of the 11-county Finger Lakes Region including: Cayuga, Chemung, Livingston, Monroe, Ontario, Schuyler, Seneca, Steuben, Tompkins, Wayne and Yates counties with a focus on communities with high rates of participation in SNAP.

For more information, please contact Alyssa Bennett at (585) 413-4051 or email abennett@foodlinkny.org or visit http://fingerlakeseatsmartnewyork.org/

Customized Nutrition Education

Foodlink now offers fully customizable nutrition education, tailored to meet the needs of your organization and your clients. A trained Foodlink nutrition educator will come to your site to offer hands-on nutrition activities, cooking and healthy snack making, and food budgeting tips for your group.

Nutrition education can be customized for any age group, skill level, or topic. Some favorite topics include:

  • Eat Your Colors!
  • MyPlate & Basic Nutrition
  • Sugar and Healthy Drinks
  • Food Marketing & Fast Food
  • Food Budgeting & Shopping
  • Reading the Nutrition Facts Panel
  • Food Origins & Food Miles
  • Basic Cooking

The cost of the program includes staff time, travel within Rochester, food, equipment, and materials to plan and bring nutrition education programming right to your organization. All you need to provide is a clean space with electricity, hot running water, and willing participants!

 

Cooking + Nutrition

Nutrition Only

Cost per 45-90 minute session*

$125

$75

10% discount for Foodlink member agencies

$110

$65

Scholarships may be available on a limited basis for organizations that cannot pay for nutrition education. Call the Community Nutrition department for more information.

*Longer sessions may incur additional costs

To schedule a class, or request more information, contact
Alyssa Bennett at (585) 413-4051 or email abennett@foodlinkny.org 

Healthy Eating Tips

To help keep the cost of food lower, try these shopping tips:

 Before you shop…

  • Decide to make healthy substitutions in classic recipes. Try replacing up to 75% of the oil in baked goods with applesauce or banana puree. Or try replacing up to 100% of the butter, margarine, or oil in baked goods with bean purees.
  • Plan on beans and legumes. Meat is the most expensive part of the meal. Cut down on your total meal cost by using non-meat protein instead.
  • Make a menu. Plan to use ingredients that spoil more quickly first. Other foods, like squash and potatoes, will stay good longer.

 While you’re shopping….

Stretch your dollar

  • Try buying in bulk. Compare unit prices. Often larger sizes also cost less.
  • Make foods from scratch. Cut out the middle man and cut down the cost! Great items to make from scratch are bread, soup, jam, hummus, salad dressing, and salsa.
  • Look for sales. Check the bakery for half-off specials on “day old” items at the end of the day. Check the meat section for discounted prices on meat that is soon to expire- then freeze it. It will stay good for at least one month.

Use produce

  • Compare prices of fresh, frozen, and canned. At different times during the year, each of these may be the more affordable choice. Frozen fruits and vegetables are flash frozen at the peak of freshness, for the best quality. Canned products can often be rinsed to reduce salt.
  • Shop locally.  Farmers’ markets offer variety and the chance to get to know the person who grew the food!

 From: Good Food on a Tight Budget

 Cook safely

CLEAN: Wash hands and surfaces often
SEPARATE: Separate raw meats from other foods   
COOK: Cook to the right temperature      
CHILL: Refrigerate food promptly

 Remember to cook all turkey and chicken to a minimum internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit

For more food safety information: www.foodsafety.gov

Food Hub

The Foodlink Food Hub

 

The United States Department of Agriculture defines a Food Hub as “a centrally located facility with a business management structure facilitating the aggregation, storage, processing, distribution and/or marketing of locally produced food products.” Most existing Food Hubs focus on helping small and mid-sized farmers access new markets to increase their profitability. Foodlink’s work maintains many of the same goals as the USDA Food Hubs, as we purchase and redistribute nearly two million pounds of local produce every year. The Foodlink Food Hub is unique, however, because our primary goal is to help underserved individuals and institutions access fresh, healthy, and affordable foods.

The core of our Food Hub is our warehouse facility at 1999 Mt. Read Blvd., where we have the capacity to distribute nearly 19 million pounds of food annually (including 4.6 million pounds of fruits and vegetables in 2015!). Ancillary assets include industrial-sized freezers and coolers, a fleet of trucks, and a commercial kitchen. This capacity allows us to purchase high volumes of local product and redistribute to the 500 agencies in our network.

By being good stewards of our assets and resources, we can go “beyond food banking” and do more than redistribute food.  This is how Foodlink has gone from Food Bank to Food Hub.  Our consumer-driven food hub starts with food distribution, but it includes several programs and resources that increase food access and food literacy. They include:

  • Cooperative Purchasing
  • Food Access Programs
  • Farm to Institution Initiatives
  • Farm to School (sliced apples)
  • Value-Added Processing
  • Prepared Meals
  • SNAP outreach and education
  • Nutrition Education
  • Food Budgeting
  • Menu-planning for agencies

Foodlink is using our assets and resources to be the regional Food Hub. We are using our strong partnerships with farmers to gather and distribute product throughout our 10-county service area. We are supporting farmers by purchasing surplus, unsold, and unharvested product. We are making this a hassle-free experience to ensure that quality local product reaches as many people as possible.

In addition, the Foodlink organization has remarkable assets and resources, such as:

138 Joseph Avenue:

  • 60,000 square feet of space
  • Commercial kitchen
  • Producing 3,500 meals per day for various organizations
  • Also houses a private company dedicated to recycling food waste to Ethanol.

1999 Mt. Read Blvd:

  • 80,000-square-foot warehouse
  • 3,700-square-foot cooler
  • 5,200-square-foot freezer
  • This building operates as our distribution center where we move 13 million pounds of food annually.

Transportation Assets:

  • 53-foot refrigerated tractor trailer
  • Three 26-foot refrigerated straight trucks
  • Four 22-foot refrigerated straight trucks
  • One 14-foot refrigerated straight truck
  • Two non-refrigerated pickup trucks
  • Two non-refrigerated vans

Operational Assets:

  • Foodlink is the food bank for 10 counties in Western and Central New York: Allegany, Genesee, Livingston, Monroe, Ontario, Orleans, Seneca, Wayne, Wyoming andYates.

Within our 10-county service area we partner with 500 human service agencies to move 16 million pounds of food annually. This requires sophisticated software and internal bandwidth for:

  • Inventory
  • Deliveries/Pick-ups
  • Accounting and billing

Programmatic assets:

Foodlink emphasizes the importance of workforce development throughout all activities. A Food Hub allows Foodlink to continue to train workers and create jobs in several different parts of the food system.

SNAP Outreach

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)

WHAT IS SNAP?

SNAP, formerly known as food stamps, is a federal nutrition program that helps you fill the gaps in your grocery budget, stretch your food dollars and buy healthy foods. SNAP benefits can be used to purchase food at grocery stores, convenience stores, some farmers’ markets and co-op food programs, and at Foodlink’s Curbside Market and Urban Farm Stands.

Local Departments of Human Services follow Department of Agriculture rules for determining SNAP eligibility based off of household size, income, and some expenses (including child care for working adults and students, and medical expenses for seniors and people with disabilities). The amount of SNAP you are eligible for is based off of the difference between 30 percent of your net income and what the USDA calls the Thrifty Food Plan amount for your family size. The Thrifty Food Plan is recognized as the most inexpensive grocery budget needed to afford a well-balanced diet for the month.

Important Changes:

New Monthly Gross Income Guidelines

Household Size

Level 1: 130% of Poverty Gross Income*

Level 2: 200% of Poverty Gross Income**

1

  $1,276

  $1,945

2

  $1,726

  $2621

3

  $2,177

  $3,329

4

  $2,628

  $3,975

5

  $3,078

 $4,651

6

  $3,529

 $5,329

7

  $3,980

 $6,005

8

  $4,430

 $6,681

* Able-Bodied Adults Without Dependents
** Households with seniors 60+, people with disabilities, and/or childcare costs incurred during work or school

Changes to Minimum and Maximum Monthly SNAP Allotment

11/1/13 – 9/30/14

10/1/14 – 9/30/15

              $15

        $16

 Changes to Maximum Monthly SNAP Allotments

 Household Size

11/1/13 – 9/30/14
(Old)

10/1/14 – 9/30/16 
(New)

1

$189

$194

2

$347

$357

3

$497

$511

4

$632

$649

5

$750

$771

6

$900

$925

7

$955

$1022

8

$1137

$1169

The SNAP Outreach Program

Starting January 2015, Foodlink is asking our agencies and community partners to directly refer families in need of SNAP assistance to their respective county Nutrition Outreach and Education Program Coordinators (NOEP). The change will enable clients to receive in-person SNAP assistance more quickly, and will support State SNAP outreach efforts. If your program is in a county that has a NOEP, you can contact your county NOEP Coordinator for SNAP outreach material with their contact information.

For counties that do not have a NOEP Coordinator (Livingston, Orleans, Wyoming and Yates county), there are several Foodlink-trained SNAP outreach advocates in your county. Their contact information is also listed below:

COUNTY NOEP COORDINATORS and SNAP Volunteers

Allegany

Cattaraugus Community Action

Joye Mott

877-686-9201

jmott@ccaction.org

Genesee

Food for All

Kay Brion

585-815-5721

ffanrc2@gmail.com

Monroe

Law NY

Sue Segelman

585-295-5624

SSegelman@Lawny.org

Monroe

Law NY

Pamela Johnson

585-295-5626

PJohnson@Lawny.org

Ontario

Law NY

Virginia Tourrella

315-781-1465 x1023

VTourrella@Lawny.org

Seneca

Law NY

Edna Reid

315-781-1465 x1008

EReid@Lawny.org

Wayne

Law NY

Tami Sprague

315-781-1465 x1018

TSprague@Lawny.org

Wyoming

Perry Emergency Food Pantry

Douglass Spencer

585-322-6486

sacramint@rochester.rr.com

Livingston

Zion Hill

Rachel Bender

585-991-3545

 

Casemanager@zionhouseavon.org

Use Your SNAP Dollars at the Farmers Markets

It is easy to use your EBT card at your local farmers market to buy fresh produce, meats/fish, dairy, grains/breads/bakery items, honey/syrup, and plants/seeds that produce food.  Find the EBT market near you!

Monroe County Farmers Markets that accept EBT

Farmers Markets in Outlying Counties that accept EBT

Workforce Development

Helping people get back to work.

Great things happen when people find jobs—they also find confidence, income and the sustainable means to put food on the table.

Foodlink launched a job training program through our Value-Added Processing initiative during the second shift at Freshwise Kitchen. Six participants have recently completed the four-week training cycle and are preparing for job placement at one of the many food processing companies in our region. We are preparing to enroll six more participants for another cycle. This is one example of how Foodlink can lend the excess capacity of our resources to job training and workforce development.

Foodlink also works with individuals through the Work Experience Program (WEP) every day in our food bank. The rerouting of the RTA bus line to include multiple stops at Foodlink’s Mt. Read location has been instrumental in ensuring that Foodlink is an accessible partner in workforce development. Our WEP placement helps impart skills such as communication, timeliness, sense of urgency, and food industry standards. WEP participants are an important part of our day-to-day food banking and help us move over 6 million pounds of donated food each year.

Green Initiatives

We believe in helping not just the people we serve but the environment as well.  Through several green initiatives, Foodlink is committed to reducing our carbon footprint and raising awareness for self-sustainability.

 

Sweet Beez

Foodlink is proud to partner with Sweet Beez, which utilizes Rochester’s abundant natural resources to save the declining honeybee population while simultaneously advancing the economic stability of the community. Recently, Sweet Beez provided us with a beehive for use at our Lexington Avenue Garden, and we work with them regularly to provide workshops to the community. Their mission is to create a vibrant urban community, empower community members, expand local economic development and protect the health and well-being of honeybees. This is done through outreach, community action and advocacy efforts. Sweet Beez is also focused on creating jobs through the local production of raw honey and development of agricultural skills. Click here to learn more.