In 2021, the Curbside Market saw a project that was years in the making come to fruition.
For as long as it existed, the market accepted SNAP benefits and helped shoppers stretch their dollars through various incentive programs. Now, the market has expanded to accept WIC (Women, Infants and Children) benefits to help support young families in the Rochester area — becoming the first mobile market in the nation to do so.
A USDA grant allowed for a pilot phase of the project to launch in 2021 (after 3 years of planning) with two Rochester sites: Cameron Community Ministries and School 33/Ryan R Center/Sully Library. A new grant from the NYS Health Foundation will pave the way for the work to expand and continue in 2022 and beyond.
Expansion of the program will enable the Curbside Market to operate a WIC route five days per week at 15 unique sites, serving hundreds of people in Rochester. Foodlink will also increase its WIC Ambassadors program by an additional 13 Ambassadors. These Ambassadors will conduct outreach in their communities to garner feedback about the market.
By creating opportunities for low-income residents at Curbside Market sites to shape the future of the program, this project will build access to healthier, affordable food both with and for the people who need it.
Learn more about the NYS Health Foundation and its Healthy Food, Healthy Lives initiative by visiting its website.