I hope that everyone had an excellent Fourth of July weekend! While many groups are taking a bit of a break for the summer, there are still some cool resources this month, check it out below.
BJ’s Charitable Foundation, the philanthropic arm of retail giant BJ’s Club, is accepting grant applications for projects that support hunger prevention! The foundation supports programs that work to alleviate hunger through the purchase of food, supplies, and additional resources necessary to feed those in need. Grants are up to $2,500 dollars and are due July 10th
Garden of Health is a new nonprofit that was founded by Carol Bauer in MontCo. One of her services is helping create sections for gluten free, allergy friendly, low sodium, and diabetes friendly food in food pantries. She has already been working at the Keystone Opportunity Center, Manna on Main Street, and Shepherd’s Shelf. Here is a press release about her work. If you’re interested in having her come to your pantry, please contact her at bauercarol70@gmail.com.
Here’s a relevant news story on why America has such high rates of food waste.
Save the dates for the Just Food Conference! Princeton is hosting a conference on the intersection of theology, sustainability, and food. Save the dates for September 24 – 26, 2015. Details and registration are coming soon.
Summer Meals: If you were at the MAHN conference, you heard about how Manna on Main Street is focusing on summer meals for kids. As you may recall, any area where more than 50% of kids receive free and reduced lunch is eligible for funding for free summer meals.  Manna’s presentation inspired the Open Link to try it out in their area. The Open Link is collaborating with the Upper Perkiomen School District (UPSD) to run two programs:      
  • The Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) that serves breakfast and lunch two days a week this summer with support from the USDA  
  • The UPSD Feeding Kinds Summer Program that gives vouchers to more than 700 families that are registered for free and reduced lunch.
If you’re interested in serving free meals to kids in the summer, check out the qualifications on the USDA website.  If you have any questions about how the Open Link got this program started, contact Stuart Bush at StuartB@theopenlink.org

Peer Learning Circle : On June 10th, the North Penn Community Health Foundation hosted the first Peer Learning Circle meeting. Meeting facilitator Robin Rifkin led about 40 attendees from 20 of the county’s food pantries through activities designed to encourage networking and group learning about the county’s overall food system. The Circle was created after the MAHN annual conference in January where food pantries and soup kitchens enthusiastically supported the notion of periodically convening throughout the year. The current vision for the Circle is to meet three times a year to connect those working in the emergency food system in the county and improve the overall system to better serve those in need. The next meeting is slated for October. A planning committee is currently being formed to identify future topics. For more information or to join the committee, contact Tamela Luce.
The InterCounty Food Network will meet from 10:00am-12:00pm on September 14th. It will be held at the Daily Bread Pantry at 845 Gravel Pike, Schwenksville, PA 19473. Contact Monica Oswald at foodcupboard@theopenlink.org

The Nutrition Coalition is meeting at 9:00am on August 20th at the Lamb Foundation, 114 North Main Street North Wales, PA 19454. Contact Julie McCabe for more information at Julie@mannaonmain.org.

Advocates Against Hunger will have its next meeting in late July or early August at the Montgomery County Foundation, Inc, at 6 Sentry Parkway, East, Suite 302. Contact Kary LaFors at AdvocatesAHLaFors@aol.com.

The Eastern coalition is planning on meeting again in September, contact Pat Druhan at pdruhan@cadcom.org to get updates about upcoming meetings.

That’s all, happy summer!
MAHN Newsletter, 7.6.15
For more information, contact montcoantihungernetwork@gmail.com
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