Newman’s Own Foundation has been supporting nutrition programs for more than 35 years, with the goal of helping to increase fresh food access and nutrition education in underserved communities.
COVID Crisis Response
Many of the organizations funded by Newman’s Own Foundation made a pivot in 2020 and responded directly to the challenges of the COVID-19 crisis, like school shut-downs and rising unemployment. For example, Urban Creators in Philadelphia now provides fresh produce, hot meals, PPE, diapers, and social service navigation in its North Philly neighborhood. In Santa Fe, MoGro supplies residents of nearby tribal communities with personal protective equipment and emergency groceries.
Support for Leadership Development
Recently, the Foundation identified a need for professional and leadership development at nutrition-focused organizations. Internal training enables organizations to grow and to plan for a more sustainable future. In 2020, the organizations receiving grants for training were:
Acta Non Verba (Oakland, CA)
Green Village Initiative (Bridgeport, CT)
Mother Hubbard’s Cupboard (Bloomington, IN)
Rid All Green Partnership (Bedford, OH)
Soul Fire Farm (Petersburg, NY)
The Food Project (Lincoln, MA)
Truly Living Well (East Point, GA)
Urban Creators (Philadelphia, PA)
See a full list of nutrition organizations receiving funding.
As part of its nutrition focus, Newman’s Own Foundation formed its first Nutrition Cohort in 2014, aimed at helping organizations work together to create greater impact than any of them could do alone through peer learning, collaboration, sharing best practices, and coordinating efforts. Six nonprofits and one research university were part of this Cohort, addressing the challenges around nutrition.
The latest Cohort formed by Newman’s Own Foundation is the Native American Nutrition Cohort, which consists of nine nonprofit organizations that work on fresh food access, nutrition education, and food sovereignty in Native American communities. Food insecurity in these communities is particularly severe, where many Native households don’t have access to adequate food due to lack of money or other resources. Through this peer-learning model, meetings are facilitated by Newman’s Own Foundation, where the group shares experiences, builds relationships, and collaborates to help address issues and solve nutrition-related problems their communities. The nine Cohort members include:
- American Indian Cancer Foundation (Minneapolis, MN) is expanding its Advancing Health Equity through Culturally Tailored Nutrition Strategies program to provide support for positive, sustainable, nutrition-related change.
- Center for Rural Affairs (Lyons, NE) is working with tribal communities in Nebraska to reach full food security and nutritious food in every household of the Omaha, Santee Sioux, Winnebago, and Ponca tribes.
- Dakota Rural Action (Brookings, SD) is working with local grassroots organizations on three South Dakota reservations (Rosebud, Yankton, and the Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate) to share best practices and improve impacts.
- MoGro (Santa Fe, NM) a project at the Santa Fe Community Foundation, is establishing Tribal community food sites, working with Pueblo farms, and developing models for local farmers to access new markets and move toward locally-driven food security in Indian country.
- Painted Desert Demonstration Projects, Inc. (AKA Star School) (AKA Star School) (Flagstaff, AZ) is providing gardening and culinary education for students, using traditional Native foods, and coordinating greenhouse plots for families.
- Partnership with Native Americans (Addison, TX) is working to increase healthy cooking skills in tribal communities. Its mobile training unit will bring canning and cooking education to remote communities.
- Running Strong for Native American Youth (Alexandria, VA) offers a Medicine Root Gardening program on the Pine Ridge reservation, with classes and seasonal income opportunities for families and community members.
- Thunder Valley Community Development Corporation (Porcupine, SD) is expanding the local food system, increasing access to local, healthy food options, and operating a demonstration farm on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.
- Zuni Youth Enrichment Project (Zuni, NM) is creating a traditional garden, hoop house, and shaded areas adjacent to the Zuni River, improving food access via farmer’s markets and promotion of home and community gardens.
Impact of the Cohort
“The leaders of these organizations have been able to gain one another’s trust and collaborate to achieve amazing things. They are implementing program expansions, new infrastructure, new fundraising strategies, and leadership goals that stemmed from their peer-to-peer learning. We expect the Cohort to continue networking and generating impact well beyond the end of our three-year initiative.”
-Kelly Giordano, Managing Director, Newman’s Own Foundation