March 24, 2021
Community Conversation
Please join us for our remote Food Coalition Community Conversation, where we will discuss Spring Mobile Food Distribution.

Date: Thursday, March 25, 2021

Time: 2:00 - 3:00 pm Mountain Time

Additional food pantry resources are on their way to Archuleta County! Join the Food Coalition to learn about the Mobile Food Pantry pilot program that will run from April-June 2021. This effort intends to expand the capacity of the existing food pantries to make food more accessible in underserved areas of the County to community members with limited access to food. Through the Mobile Food Pantry, a supply of mostly non-perishable food items will be distributed twice a month to 4 locations in the County on a first-come first-served basis. These include Lower Blanco, Aspen Springs Bar and Grill, Hickory Ridge Apartments, and Lakeview Estates. 

Call in Number: 1-669-900-9128 Meeting ID: 844 3128 3863
From GGP Garden to Heritage Cooking Meal
The Heritage Cooking Class picked bell peppers, anaheim peppers, waxed Hungarian peppers, and jalapeno peppers from the Geothermal Greenhouse Partnership dome for their heritage recipes. These peppers were used in creating Pollo a la Jardinera and Filets de Pescado a la Veracurzana. The class is excited to use local produce in their dishes, especially in the winter months!
Did you know?
Teaching the Concept of Equity Through Gardening
Ever wonder how to explain the concept of equity to students? Well plants can illustrate how different people need different things to be nourished—and how equality and equity differ. Gardening can provide a good metaphor for the fact that equity is simultaneously simple and complex. Read this article to learn a simple approach to using the traditional science activity of gardening as a catalyst for a discussion about similarities and differences among people. To read more, click here.
Food Coalition in Action:
Food Distribution in Archuleta
Participants in last week’s Community Conversation were treated to a detailed picture of the Food Coalition’s Distribution Center by Michelle Huck who coordinates the work of the Center. The Distribution Center came about when Michelle (also the Coalition’s purchasing agent) realized that the bulk buying allowed by the Covid relief funding would require a sizeable collection point and so she found one and the Distribution Center was born and certified by Colorado Public Health and Environment. Food continues to be distributed by the six food pantries in the County who now visit the Center weekly but important changes have come about.

The Center has revolutionized the response to food insecurity in our community. A large restaurant sized freezer and refrigerator were brought in. That allows the Coalition to make large purchases of perishable dairy and meat at bulk prices: milk, cheese, yogurt, butter, and beef. It also means that large purchases of fresh vegetables and fruit can be made. The additional space also means that pallet sized deliveries of nonperishable foods can also be handled. The ability to store food safely is impressive. 

The ability to store increased quantities of food has also supported an expansion in the distribution. With the help of transportation agents (the County bus system and Wilderness Journeys) food deliveries are planned for delivery to outlying locations (west on Hwy 160 and south on Hwy 84) and at different times which is a great assist to the elderly, the sick and those who simply lack transportation. The school district also functions as a transportation agent delivering food to families along the school route.

And who benefits from all this? Certainly the 350 individuals who visit the six County food pantries and the additional folks who have food delivered to their more immediate area. Add our local growers, bakers, and ranchers from whom we now purchase food. Add the community engagement created by making all this happen. Finally, add the learning that has been created as the Food Coalition continues its work in advancing food equity toward ending hunger.
Calling All Volunteers
Do you have a passion for giving back? Does any of our work get you excited and you're wondering how you can get involved in contributing to an equitable food system right here in Archuleta County? If you're interested in volunteering with the Archuleta Food System|Food Equity Coalition we have multiple opportunities to collaborate on a variety of activities like the mobile pantry pilot project and the upcoming growing season coordination efforts. Please call us directly at 401-371-3227 or send an email to [email protected]
Upcoming Events
Cooking Matters Wednesday Lessons
Join Cooking Matters for Free Weekly Classes on Wednesdays at 12 pm.
Each session has a different topic, is 40-60 minutes in duration, will feature a live recipe demonstration, and all participants receive a $10 gift card to City Market. You can sign up for one, or as many classes as you like.

3/24 Money-Saver Alert
Discuss how to use all the food that you have (or have access to), practice using ‘hard-to-use’ ingredients in a variety of recipes, discuss how to save foods that you can’t use right away, and discuss how to limit food waste with children while still introducing new foods.
Registration Link:
TARA Food Pantry - New Hours
The TARA Food Pantry will reopen to families for indoor food selection as of March 27. The pantry will be open on Monday, Wednesday, and Saturday from 10:00 AM to Noon. The pantry is located in the Lower Level of the TARA Community Center at 333 Milton Lane in Arboles. Please pass the word!
Your contribution to an equitable community-based food system makes a world of difference
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