Doña Ana and Luna Counties receive support from Growing Food Connections

May 5, 2015

Congratulations to Doña Ana County and Luna County for being selected among eight communities from across the country by the Growing Food Connections (GFC) to receive training and assistance to connect family farmers and local residents who lack access to healthy food.

The GFC program aims to foster communication, facilitate the development of partnerships, encourage information sharing, and stimulate cross learning within and between various communities to strengthen their food systems.

Over a three-year period, GFC will help local governments create their own plans, policies, partnerships, and make public investment to support family farmers and enhance food security. The communities will also serve as models for other communities nationwide that face similar challenges. Doña Ana and Luna Counties were selected from a competitive nationwide search and application process.

“We are consistently looking for ways to develop partnerships and increase our capacity. Partnering with La Semilla and others in this endeavor will improve access to healthy food throughout the County,” said Health and Human Services Department Director Jamie Michael. “Access to healthy foods is key to good health. In an agricultural community, we have tremendous opportunities to link fresh foods to families and individuals.”

GFC is a five-year, $3.96 million research initiative funded by the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative of the National Institute of Food and Agriculture of the USDA.

The Paso del Norte Health Foundation, through its Healthy Eating Active Living Initiative, has been a steady partner with La Semilla Food Center and provided funding for the launch of the Mesilla Valley Food Policy Initiative, which trains teachers through professional development workshops on topics like environmental health.

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