Children’s Council Fights Food Insecurity Through Innovative “Farm to ECE” Program 

By Laura Urban, Associate Director of Health & Nutrition, and
Raegan Sales, Healthy Apple Program Coordinator

The COVID-19 pandemic impacted food security for thousands of San Franciscans, especially families with young children. At Children’s Council, we found that 35% of families seeking our support have experienced food insecurity over the last three years. 

To address this issue, Children’s Council’s Health and Nutrition Department has teamed up with No Kid Hungry to pilot the Farm to Early Care and Education (ECE) Program. Farm to ECE programs are recognized as a strategy for addressing childhood food insecurity, increasing access to healthy fresh produce and supporting a resilient, equitable local food system through collaborations with local food hubs and farmers.  

Children’s Council is working with Yeyi Organics to supply Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) produce boxes for Family Child Care (FCC) educators participating in the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP).  

Founded by Cecilia Lara, daughter of immigrant farmworkers, Yeyi Organics strives to support small scale, organic, Black, indigenous and people of color (BIPOC) farmers who implement climate-smart agricultural practices and regenerative strategies that increase resilience to climate change.  

Every week for four months, with the help of Service Corps volunteers, CSA boxes are delivered to 24 FCCs’ front doors. Packed with organic fruits and vegetables, FCC educators are encouraged to use the produce for meals, snacks and nutrition education strategies to encourage healthy choices and increase nutrition literacy. The learning continues at home as educators share excess produce with families in their care.  

Thank you Children’s Council for the delicious produce box!
Yan Na Wu, Bright Beginning Childcare

With local farmers facing unprecedented disruptions in the growing season due to climate change, while families and educators experience inflation across the board, these initiatives are essential to support the wellbeing of our entire community. 

Children’s Council is actively seeking funding to take our learnings from this pilot and launch this as an ongoing effort to support our community. Contact Susan Hendrickson if you are interested in supporting this great work as a sustaining partner. 

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