Here at Leah’s Pantry, we had a busy end of the year. Though our workshops, as usual, slowed down over the holidays, my family moved from San Francisco to San Diego, and we had to do some reorganization as a result! I took a little time off to get adjusted down here, and Emily moved into a new office so she could continue to hold down the fort in San Francisco.
Now we’re ready to get back to work! We have our usual slate of workshops with the San Francisco Food Bank, SHELTER Inc. of Contra Costa County, and BRIDGE Housing to plan for the winter. We recently finished a successful cooking club at a residential GLIDE property in San Francisco.
But our big news concerns a NEW program – Foods Smarts Training Program – which was recently given go-ahead funding from the California Endowment. This is really exciting for us! We started laying the groundwork for this grant last year, so it’s been in the pipeline for a while but we haven’t moved ahead in advance of funding. We have a few other potential partners to help pilot this new project and will keep everyone updated.
The premise of the program is to provide an alternate way organizations can take advantage of Leah’s Pantry workshops. Instead of having us come in and run the workshops, the organizations send staff directly to us for training and support. Then the staff runs our workshops at their organizations. For some organizations, this is a great way to increase the skills of their existing staff and run continuous nutrition programming without having to find the funding year after year. Also, we’re able to capitalize on the staff knowledge of their clients—which in turn increases our ability to create the dynamic, culturally competent programming we strive for.