Checkbox-571: #1, #3, #4, #5
Legal-name: Long Beach Fresh, a project of Social and Environmental Entrepreneurs
Address: 23532 Calabasas Road, Suite A
Officer: Jennifer Hoffman, CEO
ContactName: Ryan Smolar
Title: Co-Director, Long Beach Fresh
GrantPurpose: To improve food security during Covid19 by facilitating citywide communication and strategies that connect our local food system efforts and resilience to the needs of local communities.
Periodoftime: 3 months, with established services/resources continuing in perpetuity
Audienceserved: Long Beach Fresh works with communities in vulnerable communities of Central, West and North Long Beach, but also has reach that extends city-wide. Our annual reach to local communities on social media and our website alone tops 500,000 a year. Our primary work is funded to work with populations of older adults, lower income families, and those experiencing health disparities, especially the food insecure.
Demoofaudience: Our mass communications will be tailored for a broad audience, while some specific resource guides and workshops target youth 10-21 years old, and older adults aged 55+. We aim to translate key materials for Spanish-speaking population as well, tailor food access materials in Khmer, and communicate with resident groups of low-income families through our existing partnerships with LB Health Department, United Cambodian Community, Long Beach Alliance for Food and Fitness, and Adventures to Dreams Youth Enrichment.
District: All districts, with emphasis on CD9 and CD7, CD6 and CD1
1. What disaster recovery service have already been provided? : In the event of the pandemic, Long Beach Fresh has pivoted operations to support (1) populations experiencing hardship accessing healthy food and (2) helping our local food system survive and (3) helping foster food trading and micro-enterprise within the community.
– We have built the city’s open grocery list and map which details over 250 grocers citywide, with Covid19 information, hours, and policies.
– We have rebuilt our website to connect people with the most important food resources: from donating food to finding food assistance
– We have mapped and updated information on all local food banks and pantries
– We have organized weekly calls with members of the food system
– We have promoted safe “Crop Swaps” using an app that helps people swap from their fruit trees and backyard vegetables
– We have helped connect community and government agencies with food distributors to organize food relief efforts
– We have been aggressively tracking regional, statewide and national programs and best practices, communicating these to local farmers markets, stores, restaurants, and food access organizations.
2. What additional services, above your standard operations, will be conducted with this grant funding? Helping the food insecure during the pandemic requires constant scanning of the environment while coordinating grassroots efforts with institutions and community networks.
LB Fresh will continue to be the primary hub for food access, as we are widely connected across the local food community as well as health, education, poverty alleviation, and government spheres.
We are leveraging our super-connectivity to keep up-to-date on what’s happening on the ground, coordinate responses, connecting partners, and providing resources to the public.
We will work with local food contractors and food community members affected by COVID-19 to enhance our efforts to:
(1) Scan – Retain community-level sector coordinators to keep in touch with the needs of various sectors including student meals, seniors, low-income families, growers, local food producers, food redistributors
(2) Communicate – Distill critical information on how to access local healthy food like which restaurants, farm boxes, farmers markets and food assistance programs via infographics, webinars, newsletters, neighborhood and social media campaigns.
(3) Connect – Help local food makers and food growers share and sell their food to help expand their access to local healthy food and/or create income.
3. What individuals (and/or organizations) will you assist? We work with over 70 local food organizations, including urban farms and local food producers. We will work with everyone from the Farmers Markets to food redistributors and government agencies in this effort to help them adapt, and get information out to communities seeking healthy, safe food access.
The individuals we serve are communities who reach out to us or are connected to our 70+ partners, 20+ community-based advisors and our expert staff and contractors.
Long Beach Fresh has a robust framework for tackling systemic food changes in the City of Long Beach. Over the last six years, we have worked closely with elected officials, the sustainability office, health department, economic development department and planning department as a trusted partner to encourage and help implement several changes that have increased food access to vulnerable communities.
4. What other disaster recovery funds have you received? What amount?: N/A.
5. What other disaster recovery funds have you applied for?: Building Healthy Communities COVID-19 Rapid Response