Food System Resiliency

Meetings: Every other Tuesday at 2pm via Zoom

Projects Proposed for CARES Act Funding

Food Resilience Community Group, composed of thirteen community members including farmers, agricultural regional experts, academics and representatives from OlyCap, NODC, a DEM volunteer and WSU Extension. This group has been focused on understanding the immediate impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on the food system in Jefferson County over the past three months. We have learned that the impacts of the pandemic include a substantial increase in food insecurity among families who have lost income due to the crisis, and disruption of food distribution systems making the availability of local food resources more important. Our recommendations, listed below in order of priority, are based on the group’s initial research and collective knowledge of gaps and/or obstacles in place for different sectors of the local food system to provide food to those most vulnerable to food insecurity in the community. The ICG/ICC Food Resilience Community Group recommends that these issues be addressed through CARES Act funding:

  1. Provide financial support to the NODC’s Olympic Peninsula Farmers Fund to contract with Jefferson County farmers to provide food to food banks, senior meal programs and school meal or other meal programs serving families economically impacted by Covid-19. The funds would be used for regional farmers to raise more food specifically for vulnerable members of the community.  Funds requested: $25,000. Sub-recipient: NODC
  2. Provide additional funding for Jefferson Farmers Markets Association (JFMA) SNAP match program, which doubles the amount that SNAP recipients have to spend at the farmers market. SNAP funds enable low-income community members to purchase healthy and locally grown food, while also increasing the income for regional farmers whose profits from farm sales are down due to COVID-19. Since the pandemic began, JFRM has used most of the funds they were allocated for the SNAP program for a two year period. These funds would ensure that the SNAP program will remain a viable solution for many lowincome families. Funds requested: $25,000. Sub-recipient: Jefferson County Farmers Markets
  3. Provide $10,000 to maintain and operate Chimacum School District’s Multipurpose Room kitchen and food access distribution hub. Prior to the pandemic, the School District planned to close the Multipurpose Room and does not have the money budgeted to keep the space open and accessible. Over the 2020 summer period, the YMCA has used the space for preparation of meals for their summer programs for children. The funds would ensure that this space could be used in the 2020/2021 school year to package and store meals as well as dry goods. The requested funds would be used to cover the costs for utilities, facility maintenance, janitorial services. Funds requested: $10,000 Sub-recipient: Chimacum School District.
  4. Provide funding to create and distribute food boxes to families whose children are receiving free and reduced meals through the School Districts. Different School Districts have different approaches to delivering meals to youth during the pandemic. The requested funds would be used for organizational and distribution costs to provide additional food to families receiving aid for their children. Funds requested: $7,500. Sub-recipient: OlyCap

Current Group Members

Cliff MooreWSU Jefferson CountyExecutive Director
Crystie KislerFinnriver FarmCo-owner
Laura LewisWSU Food SystemsDirector
Annie Bartos
Dave Seabrook
John MauroCity of Port TownsnedCity Manager
Greg BrothertonJefferson CountyCommissioner, D3
Karen AffeldNODCExecutive Director
Pam PetranekPort of Port TownsendCommissioner
Kevin StreettJefferson PUDGeneral Manager
Rufina Garay
Rachel Cantrell
Shelby SmithCommunity Wellness Project

Liaison and Chairs

John Mauro
City Manager, Port Townsend

Crystie Kisler
Co-Owner, Co-Founder
Finnriver Farm & Cidery

Cliff Moore
Director, WSU Jefferson County Extension