October Change for Good Partner: AFC Gives Community Fund
October's Change for Good Partner is
AFC Gives is the philanthropic arm of the Ashland Food Co-op. Nothing means more to us than contributing to the health and strength of our community. To build upon this mission we have developed two funding programs to support the good work that is happening in our community:
Change for Good and Community Grants.
Our Community Grants program has given back to our local nonprofits’ projects for more than two decades, supporting grassroots programs, giving support for small projects, and having funds on hand to respond to emergency issues in our region.
Each year, the Ashland Food Co-op's Board of Directors designates a small percentage of sales from the previous year to fund AFC's Community Grants program. As you shop during the month of October, we invite you to round up your bill to add to the pool AFC Gives will donate next year to fund worthy projects in our community.
These funds support local projects that align with our vision of enhancing health and enriching the community while promoting our mission to provide education about food, nutrition, and health. These local organizations are the heartbeat of our community, and we are proud to contribute these grants to assist in funding projects that are either already in the works or ready to get funded.
In 2020, we proudly donated over $24,000 to 27 area nonprofit organizations doing excellent work within our community.
Organizations' Projects funded by 2020 Community Grants:
Applegate Neighborhood Network
“The funding provided by the Ashland Food Coop Gives Grant Program was utilized by Applegate Neighborhood Network to purchase nursery stock from Applegate Valley based native plant nursery and seed company, Klamath-Siskiyou Native Seeds. A small group of volunteers worked within existing COVID 19 restrictions to facilitate the planting of 257 native flowering plants (14 separate species) and the seeding of 15 native species beneficial to native pollinators in the Applegate River watershed. The funding from AFC was utilized to buy native nursery stock and the native seed was donated by Klamath-Siskiyou Native Seeds. The planting took place on November 19, 2020.”
Armadillo Technical Institute
Culture of Peace Commissions
Ashland Supportive Housing and Community Outreach
“The Regenerative Bee Pasture project aims to develop a data-driven low maintenance, nutrient-dense, and inexpensive flower-rich pasture system for pasture managers to create an environmentally and economically improved landscape for livestock and bees.”
“Despite the pandemic, Bellview Grange was able to complete soil preparation, fencing, and move two inappropriate volunteer pine trees from the site of the small Food Forest at Bellview Grange, between the Grange Hall and Bellview Elementary School. Although we were not able to complete the outreach to schools and homeowners associations as planned, Grange members participated in the development of Southern Oregon Food Solutions' food waste reduction brochure , and maintained liaison with Emerging Futures Network and the regional Jackson County Soil and Water Conservation District, in preparation for continuing the planned food forest, rain garden and bio-swale areas around the Grange Hall, once it is safe to meet in person.”
Cave Junction Farmers' Market
“Our AFC Gives grant helped to provide sustainable farming "take home" projects for our Cultivate Kids Program. We were able to provide 26 different projects, from "growing your own pickles" (providing free plants, instructions for growing and pickle recipes) to "planting for pollinators" and materials to make a flower press, and provided enough materials for 30 kids each week over the course of the market season.”
“When COVID-19 shut down schools, emptied grocery store shelves and sparked a nation-wide run on seeds, Cultivate Oregon saw an emerging need and adapted to help provide seeds for the growing season. Through Cultivate Oregon's program, Seeds to the People, we sent reclaimed and donated seeds to over 50 families across Oregon who were food insecure, and in need. Ashland Food Coop funding was the primary reason we were able to launch and run this program (quickly) so that families were mailed seeds to help them grow their own food, and increase their food security into the future.”
Raptor Creek Farm operated by The Josephine County Food Bank
“The AFC grant allowed us to purchase mulch and compost for the 16 raised bed and each bed is freshly filled, ready for the growing season. It had been 5 years since the last time the beds had been filled. An AmeriCorps team joined us this season and pulled out the weeds around the fence and now 4" of bark mulch surrounds each bed. Members of the community garden are thrilled.”
Multicultural Association of Southern Oregon
Options for Homeless Residents of Ashland and Options for Helping Residents of Ashland
“The AFC grant helped us purchase essential items and services for unhoused and other people impacted by the pandemic. Examples include birth certificates or ID cards, documents needed for work such as a state issued food handlers card or specific tools needed for employment or clothing like non-slip shoes.”
Outdoor Discovery Program Parent Advisory Committee (ODP PAC)
Phoenix Counseling Center, Inc.
Siskiyou Mountain Club
“We used funds for paying field staff who were working on the Rogue River Trail. They were leading interns to reduce erosion and maintain vegetation on the rugged slopes of this popular National Recreation Trail. They were able to restore approximately 10 miles of the trail.”
Southern Oregon Climate Action Now - SOCAN
Southern Oregon University Foundation
St. Vincent de Paul
“Our AFC grant enabled us to assist those who called on us in three ways: helping people into housing by assisting with rental deposits; helping those in need stay housed by assisting with rent payments (especially important during this pandemic when so many service workers have been unemployed); and assisting needy families with utility payments during these cold winter months.”
Vesper Meadow Education Program
“Support from AFC went towards establishing our Native Food Plant Program through (1) the engagement with youth for education about native plants, (2) volunteer stewardship activities with members of the local public, and (3) initial partnership development with Tribes of record in SW Oregon. Thank you AFC!”
Medford School District Armadillo
The Parker House Project
“HIV Alliance used Ashland Food Co-Op funds to purchase nutritious food (e.g., holiday dinners, food bags) for approximately 30 Jackson County clients living with HIV who are unhoused and living on low incomes. This assistance was urgently needed and so helpful for our clients during COVID-19, when they have experienced increased barriers to services and other serious challenges that affect their ability to meet basic nutrition needs.”
White Oak Farm & Education Center
Ashland Community Hospital Foundation
Ashland Emergency Food Bank
“The Ashland Emergency Food Bank was able to provide a complete basket of healthy food to struggling families & individuals in our area. We served 1600 people per month at the Food Bank. Funding from the Ashland Food Co-op helped to feed the food-insecure in our community, including victims of the fire and those affected by the pandemic’s consequences.”
Helman Elementary School PTA
“The 2020-2021 school year has been unlike any other. With the pandemic, distance learning, and the first-day-of-school wildfire, we had a lot of families experiencing terrible emotional and financial stress. Helman Elementary School's PTA has provided weekend food backpacks for as many as 17 different households every Friday throughout the school year and we could not have done it without the support of the $1,000 AFC Gives grant we received. Thank you so much for your support of these families and for recognizing that healthy food equals healthy communities!”
Southern Oregon ESD - Migrant Education Program
The AFC Gives committee focuses on ways that the Co-op community can support local organizations and groups doing important work in the Rogue Valley.
2020 was the first year of Change for Good, a register round-up program to benefit a slate of ten organizations, voted on by Co-op owners, through the cumulative donations of shoppers choosing to round-up their shopping total to the nearest dollar.
From one cent to 99 cents, it all adds up to feeling good about supporting the community.
More Co-op News
We are honored to partner with ACCESS this August - a fantastic organization that has been serving our community for over four decades. ACCESS, which stands for "A Community in Action, Connecting, Empowering, and Strengthening Self-Sufficiency," is dedicated to addressing hunger, homelessness, and poverty in Southern Oregon.
As part of our ongoing commitment to supporting the local community, AFC is thrilled to announce the that we are accepting applications for our Community Grants program.
Ashland Food Co-op's Community Grants program is designed to foster meaningful change in the Southern Oregon region. Through these grants, we seek to support projects that align with our mission of promoting local and sustainable food systems, addressing food insecurity, and promoting community engagement.
Ashland Food Co-op is thrilled to partner with Maslow Project for our Change for Good program! Maslow Project is an incredible organization that works tirelessly to support homeless youth and families in Southern Oregon. Their mission is to empower individuals and families to achieve self-sufficiency, and they do this through a range of services including housing assistance, medical care, and educational support.
The Ashland Food Co-op is teaming up with the Southern Oregon Land Conservancy (SOLC) as its Change for Good partner for this month. This collaboration aims to support SOLC's mission of conserving Southern Oregon's natural landscapes and habitats.
Talent Maker City's mission is to build a more connected, prosperous, and resilient community through hands-on creativity and innovative STEAM-based learning. (STEAM = Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, & Math.) They have a bustling Makerspace facility, brimming with creative energy in downtown Talent offering hands-on STEAM-based workshops and programming for curious minds of all ages!
We're always learning and growing here at the Co-op and with the approach of Cinco de Mayo we thought we would share a (very) brief history lesson and some thoughts on celebrating this holiday here in the United States.
From Kristina Lefever, Pollinator Project Rogue Valley President
From Klamath Bird Observatory, March 2023's Change for Good partner:
When Douglass Came to Rochdale, England a Slave and Left a Free Man
By David J Thompson
OHRA helps low-income people build better lives through access to social service resources. By helping
people move from crisis to stability, OHRA builds more capable individuals, stronger families, and a
better community. We have three core programs:
January's Change for Good Partner is
local nonprofit Ashland Food Angels
December's Change for Good Partner is
Rogue Action Center
The Rogue Action Center (RAC) builds organizing infrastructure, leaders, and community power for a just, inclusive, and sustainable Southern Oregon for everyone.
November's Change for Good Partner is
October's Change for Good Partner is
AFC Gives Community Fund