In September, I had the opportunity to attend both the annual Association for Rural & Small Libraries (ARSL) and the biennial Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) conferences. For me, the major take-away from both events is that libraries can help each other develop programs that address food insecurity.
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The Southern Adirondack Library System works with two regional food distribution networks – the Comfort Food Community and Capitol Roots’ Squash Hunger Program – to reduce food waste by rescuing food. The food gleaned from local farms is shared through libraries located in rural food deserts to alleviate the challenges of food insecurity and food access.
Ellsworth Public Library and the local community health nonprofit Healthy Acadia partnered to present an online grocery store tour to share helpful tips about shopping healthy on a budget.
Nicole Gurerri, a Maine SNAP-Ed nutrition educator from Healthy Acadia, took participants on a virtual tour through a PowerPoint presentation, covering each food group and including tips for how to choose healthy options while saving money.