Citizens for Citizens Receives MA Food Security Infrastructure Grant
CFC receives $112k to purchase food truck and facility equipment to supplement their food pantry.
FALL RIVER, MA – Last week, the Baker-Polito Administration announced that Citizens for Citizens, Inc. (CFC) was one of the recipients of the 2020 Food Security Infrastructure Grant. CFC was awarded $112,009 to purchase a refrigerated food truck and related facility equipment to supplement their current food pantry operations.
The goal of the Food Security Infrastructure Grant Program is to ensure that individuals and families throughout the Commonwealth have access to food, with a special focus on food that is produced locally and equitable access to food. The program also seeks to ensure that farmers, fisherman and other local food producers are better connected to a strong, resilient food system to help mitigate future food supply and distribution disruption.
CFC currently runs a food pantry on the first floor of their main office in Fall River on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays 8:30am – 12pm. With the rise of COVID-19, many food pantries in the area closed down, putting extra strain on local pantries that remained open, like CFC. To address this increased need, CFC ramped up their operations by accepting increased quantities of food. But with limited storage space and no easily accessible means of food transportation, CFC has currently been challenged with their mission. With the addition of a refrigerated food truck, CFC will have increased capacity for pickups without renting vehicles, extra room for pantry storage, and a means to expand pantry operations to the Greater Taunton area by creating a mobile pantry.
The grant application was a cooperative effort between CFC and State Senator Michael Rodrigues of 1st Bristol & Plymouth. According to Liz Berube, Executive Director at CFC, Senator Rodrigues’ office was instrumental in supporting the CFC grant and tracking its progress. “Senator Rodrigues has continued to be a fervent champion of the low-income community and does everything in his power to support the work we do at CFC and the work of other community organizations,” said Berube. Three other organizations within Rodrigues service area also received grants during this round of grant awards.
“I am thrilled that an organization as deserving as Citizens for Citizens was selected to receive this award,” said State Senator Michael J. Rodrigues (D-Westport). “I am always proud to partner with CFC to serve our community, and this grant will allow them to help even more people who are struggling during these unprecedented times. Thank you to the Baker-Polito Administration for awarding this grant, and thank you to the hard-working people at CFC for their tireless efforts to serve our most vulnerable neighbors.”
With the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic still impacting our local communities, CFC hopes to continue their fight of the long-term effects of the pandemic and food insecurity by further expanding their pantry operations, filling service gaps, and collaborating with local partners to support their service area during such a crucial time.
Citizens for Citizens, Inc. is the Massachusetts Community Action Agency that assists over 40,000 individuals in the Greater Fall River and Taunton areas each year. We provide short and long term services that empower low-income individuals and families with the tools necessary to overcome the burdens of poverty and financial crises while creating and maintaining self-sufficiency. In keeping with the standards established over fifty years ago by Lyndon B. Johnson and the Economic Opportunity Act of 1964, the dedicated management and staff of Citizens for Citizens, Inc. continue to search for and develop innovative new programs to combat poverty and help low-income families lead healthier, happier, and more productive lives.