Fulton Fresh Receives $25,000 Grant from the Atlanta Falcons Youth Foundation | News
Grant will be used to fund expansion of mobile farmer’s market distribution route into additional urban food deserts
The Fulton County Board of Commissioners voted today to match a $25,000 grant received from the Atlanta Falcons Youth Foundation to expand the fresh food distribution and nutritional education services provided by the Fulton Fresh Mobile Farmer’s Market. The expansion will increase distribution locations from four sites to eight sites in 2012 to residents living in areas designated a food deserts. The Fulton Fresh Mobile Farmer’s Market is operated by Fulton County Cooperative Extension and is an innovative way to address health disparities and improve nutrition education in low-income neighborhoods with high rates of diet-related illnesses and insufficient access to grocery stores with fresh food.
“We are pleased and excited that Fulton Fresh has received this recognition for the services it provides to residents,” stated Menia Chester, Director of Fulton County Cooperative Extension. “2012 will be our second season of operation and this funding will allow us to reach more residents in more communities needing this service.”
All produce is from a local farm and is distributed to residents living in communities designated as “food deserts”, large geographic areas where mainstream grocery stores are scarce or missing. Living in unhealthy food environments where fast food or unhealthy foods are more available than freshly grown foods leaves communities at risk for obesity and diabetes as well as other chronic diseases.
In the summer of 2011, the Fulton Fresh Mobile Farmer’s Market delivered an estimated 10,000 lbs. of fresh produce to over 900 residents living in four areas identified as food deserts. Residents of West End, Bankhead Highway, Palmetto and the Collier Heights communities benefited from the delivery of fresh produce, learning about the importance of eating healthy and how to prepare tasty, healthy meals.
“The service provided by the Fulton Fresh mobile unit supports the county’s efforts to encourage healthy lifestyles for all residents,” states Chester. “We are excited about partnering with the Atlanta Falcons Youth Foundation to make fresh produce more accessible. We hope our efforts will help residents make the right choices as they try to live healthier lives.” Additional routes are being identified and will be announced prior to the 2012 season.
For more information about the Fulton Fresh Mobile Farmer’s Market or Fulton County Cooperative Extension, call 404.332.2400 or log-on to www.fultoncountyga.gov.
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