“People were yearning to recapture a connection that SLV residents have had historically with the seed, the dirt, the farmer, the animal, and the story of where and how their food is grown.“Liza Marron, Executive Director
A Grassroots Effort to Address Health in the San Luis Valley
The SLV Prevention Coalition, a community-based youth substance-abuse and underage drinking prevention coalition with over 55 member organizations, addresses topics of health in the region.
$1,220,500 in funding is received from LiveWell Colorado – a nonprofit working toward reducing obesity and promoting healthy eating and active living in Colorado. These funds infuse energy into existing local efforts. The Alamosa County coalition serves as a public health network, with advocates for everything from breastfeeding to elder adult health.
Alamosa Garden Coordinator Melissa Emminger attends the Community Food Security Conference in Philadelphia on a LiveWell scholarship with a promise to return to the community and share what she had learned… When over 50 people swelled the room and stayed long after the presentation was over —abuzz with conversation— it became apparent that the community was ripe for a new food story.
Representatives from 14 districts plan and execute a regional Farm-to-School Program, and the SLV chapter of Cooking Matters is launched as part of this effort.
Food Symposium with mentors in New Mexico leads to the official formation of the SLVLFC with the mission to foster an equitable local food system that restores the health of the people, community, economy, & ecosystem.
The closing of the Rakhra Mushroom Farm in Alamosa means that many Mayan community members are displaced from work; they begin growing food at the Polston Elementary School garden. The bountiful food produced by the Mayan families who grow there is impressive.
The MoKi food truck is donated, then eventually renovated to look the way it does today.
The SLVLFC successfully advocates for the Colorado Cottage Foods Bill so that some types of homemade goods can be bought and sold, and also for Double Up Food Bucks to apply specifically for Colorado-grown produce.
Valley Roots Food Hub is established in Mosca at the White Rock Specialties potato warehouse, marking the beginning of a strong partnership that is still thriving today.
The Rio Grande Farm Park, originally called the Healthy Living Park, is purchased through a collective campaign by the Trust For Public Land, the Mayan Community, the County of Alamosa, the City of Alamosa, influential citizens, community members, and community gardens.
The Local Foods, Local Places Gov. Program is supported by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC), and the Delta Regional Authority (DRA). Alamosa is one of 23 communities across the United States selected to participate in the program The Steering Committee expresses a desire to build on the communities’ existing plans, which include the City of Alamosa Comprehensive (2017), the Rio Grande Farm Park Master Plan (2017), and the San Luis Valley Trails and Recreation Master Plan (2014).
View LFLP Community Action Plan for SLV »»
During the pandemic, $24,000 of Rio Grande Farm Park produce is provided to the Boys & Girls Club of SLV, the Immigrant Resource Center, and the Food Bank Network of the SLV through the Colorado Health Foundation’s Farm To Pantry Program. View annual report.
We collaborate with other local food hubs and hot spots to increase capacity and accessibility for businesses, institutions, farmers and families throughout the region. We partner with the Mountain Roots Food Project in Gunnison to fulfill a Local Food Promotion Program USDA grant that serves this purpose.
The Education Center at the Rio Grande Farm Park is constructed and celebrated.
Alamosa is named a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Culture of Health Prize Recipient.