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Community Redistribution Fund Announces 2023 Grantees

Good Shepherd Food Bank’s Community Table is proud to announce the 2023 Community Redistribution Fund grantees. As part of its focus on equity, diversity, and inclusion, the Food Bank created a Community Redistribution Fund aimed at breaking down barriers and increasing access to culturally appropriate foods for BIPOC (Black, Indigenous people and People of Color), immigrant, and refugee communities throughout Maine. According to the Ending Hunger in Maine by 2030 Task Force Report, 28 percent of households headed by people of color are food insecure, and 40 percent of households headed by Black Mainers are food insecure.

“Food insecurity disproportionally impacts communities of color. Community Redistribution Grants, while not a permanent solution, help break down barriers to accessing culturally appropriate foods and bridge the gap as we make strides to center equity in the Food Bank’s work and address the root causes of hunger in Maine,” stated Marpheen Chann, one of Good Shepherd Food Bank’s community impact managers. “We are proud to partner with leaders, advocates, and partners from communities of color throughout our community-led grantmaking process and in the fight to end hunger in Maine.”

In total, 59 organizations across Maine will receive investments from the Food Bank’s Community Redistribution Fund. Of the $750,000 available, $170,000 will be granted to Maine tribes and Indigenous-led organizations to support traditional food and foodways. Bangor, Northern, and Downeast Maine, with most Maine tribal communities and Indigenous-led organizations included, will be granted $210,000, and $245,000 will be granted to Black-led organizations.

2023 Community Redistribution Fund Grantees

  • A.C.T Heaven First Church
  • Afghan Community of Maine
  • AK Health and Social Services
  • Angolan Community of Maine
  • Azerbaijan Society of Maine
  • Bangor School Department
  • Black Owned Maine
  • Brunswick School Department
  • Capital Area New Mainers Project
  • Congolese Community of Maine
  • Cultivating Community
  • Eastern Woodlands Rematriation Collective
  • Five Pillars Butchery
  • Gateway Community Service Maine
  • Greater Portland Family Promise
  • Health Corner
  • In Her Presence
  • Intercultural Community Center
  • Khmer Maine
  • Land In Common
  • Lewiston Auburn Youth Network
  • Lewiston Public Schools
  • Living With Peace International
  • Maine Association for New Americans (MANA)
  • Maine Immigrant and Refugee Services
  • Maine Immigrants’ Rights Coalition (MIRC)
  • Maine Medical Center Food Pantry
  • Maine Multicultural Center
  • Mano en Mano
  • Mawiomi Garden
  • Mawita’nej Epij’ij
  • Mi’kmaq Nation
  • Multicultural Community and Support Services
  • Multilingual & Multicultural Center, Portland Public Schools
  • New England Arab American Organization (NEAAO)
  • New Roots Cooperative Farm
  • Nibezun
  • Omar Ibn Al-Khattab Masjid
  • Passamaquoddy Tribe at Indian Township
  • Passamaquoddy Tribe at Pleasant Point
  • Presente! Maine
  • Sacred Heart/St. Dominic’s Church
  • Somali Bantu Community Association of Maine
  • South Portland School Department
  • South Sudanese Group of Friends
  • St. Ann’s/Penobscot Food Pantry
  • Sustainable Livelihoods Relief Organization (SLRO)
  • The Third Place
  • Tree Street Youth, Inc.
  • Ummah Farm Enterprise
  • United Asian Communities
  • Wabanaki Public Health and Wellness
  • Welcoming Immigrants, Our New Neighbors
  • Westbrook School Department
  • Zambian Community of Maine
  • Zone 6 Farms

In 2020, Good Shepherd Food Bank established the Community Redistribution Fund to support organizations’ efforts to increase access to culturally important foods to community members in need. The fund is intended for organizations working closely and primarily with BIPOC, immigrant, and refugee communities. Thank you to our Community Redistribution Fund Grant Advisory Committee for reviewing and approving the funds. Members include Crystal Cron, Penobscot Tribe Ambassador Maulian Dana, Alice Kabore, Charles Mugabe, and Grace Valenzuela, whose terms on the committee concluded at the end of June 2023.

Organizations that fit the criteria for eligibility could apply for grant funds to help support equitable food access for BIPOC, immigrant, and refugee communities. Priority was given to organizations that were not part of the Food Bank’s network and organizations that were led by and serving Black, Brown, and Indigenous people.

Use of grant funds could include but was not limited to the purchase of food for direct distribution or meal preparation; gift cards/credits to culturally specific markets for community members; food sovereignty projects; farming/agriculture projects; transportation costs. Up to 20% of grant funds could be used for general operating expenses.

The Community Redistribution Fund and the grants made through the program are funded by Good Shepherd Food Bank’s Campaign to End Hunger. Key priorities of the campaign include building the capacity of partners and communities to strengthen food security and investing in communities of color, which are disproportionately impacted by hunger.

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