The REC’s Food Justice Program has established itself over the past 15 years as reliable and effective at promoting community leadership and creating access to food for Worcester’s most food insecure communities. The Food Justice Program has focused its efforts on four project areas city wide: a community gardens network (UGROW), youth development through urban agriculture (YouthGROW), farmers markets, and a new healthy cooking education project (Share Our Strength’s Cooking Matters).
These projects have been successful in getting food to the hard to reach communities in the city who are most often left out of programmatic initiatives. This success can be attributed to the Food Justice Program’s overall dedication to the holistic mission of addressing food insecurity through creative initiatives and strong partnerships, maintaining a grassroots participatory approach that values community and youth leadership, and creating pathways of sustainability through entrepreneurial market-based approaches.
The Food Justice Program aims to make comprehensive strides in developing a sustainable local food system that benefits all of Worcester’s residents, including those low income families and communities of color who have experienced systemic barriers to accessing healthy, local food.