The Seattle Human Services Department (HSD) is pleased to announce the results of the Farm to Table Support Services RFP which closed May 5, 2022, releasing General Fund and Sweetened Beverage Tax (SBT) funding for proposals from organizations and farmers interested in food equity in Seattle Preschool Programs serving low-income children and families.
The Farm to Table Support Services RFP was the result of a year of community engagement with families, children, and preschool staff. It invests in healthy, local, sustainable, culturally relevant food access and education and has two program components: nutrition education and Farm to Family Food Bags.
In response to this RFP, HSD received seven proposals totaling $1,077,104 in requested funds from agencies. One agency, Tilth Alliance, applied to both program components which for the purposes of this RFP counted as two separate proposals. Of the seven proposals received, all were eligible for review and were rated by the rating committee.
The rating committee was diverse in terms of gender, age, sexual orientation, race, and ethnicity, as well as representation from first generation immigrant and refugee communities. Rating members had knowledge and experience in farming, preschool settings, social services, food access, and nutrition education. The rating committee was comprised of Seattle City employees, Renton School District staff, and community leaders.
The committee supported all of the proposals for funding, although none of the agencies received the full amount requested due to funding limitations. Read more below about a few of them:
- Dinner Table Ideas dba Pacific Coast Harvest
- Family Works
- Pike Place Market Preservation and Development Authority (PDA)
- Solid Ground
- Tilth Alliance
Hoorah! We’re very honored to continue working with the City…. I look forward to working with all of you, our agency co-partners, the pre-school sites, and City staff to implement a plan for the coming year.Chris Teeny, Managing Owner, Pacific Coast Harvest
Pacific Coast Harvest (PCH) is a Seattle-based food hub with a mission to support the strengthening of the food system through equity, accessibility, and sustainability. They have over 150 direct connections to local farmers using sustainable growing practices, many of whom are Black, Indigenous, or People of Color (BIPOC); women, immigrant, or first-generation farmers; or have twenty acres of production or less. Every other week, preschool families will receive four food items, consisting of 3 vegetables (at least one leafy green) and 1 fruit in a compostable bag. Each delivery will also include an information sheet (offered in Spanish as well) featuring product storage tips, a relevant recipe, a product of the week, and information about the farms where each food item came from.
Wonderful news! Thank you so much for all your hard work, and we look forward to providing Washington’s best produce to our local preschoolers!Ivy Fox, Farm Program Manger, Pike Place Market PDA
Pike Place Market PDA Farm to Family Bag program connects 70+ farmers directly with community. The agency values incubation and access as part of the PDA’s Charter. The majority of the farmers are BIPOC (75%), immigrants and refugees (68%), women-run (75%), and over 35% are from King, Snohomish and Pierce Counties. Their program works exclusively with Washington farmers and provides bi-weekly produce bags with one fruit and three vegetables in biodegradable bags for families to take home.
Historically, Tilth Alliance’s Youth + Family Education and Market Programs teams had separate programs. Their application proposes connecting the food bag work with nutrition education to more holistically serve preschool sites. This internal partnership will bring families, students, and teachers a deeper and more coordinated connection to the education, food, and food system in addition to strengthening and leveraging Tilth Alliance’s organizational resources.
The Farm to Table Program started in 2011 when a southwest Seattle preschool chef came to HSD with a challenge: “help us find affordable, local, culturally appropriate produce to feed our babies.” That year, the program started as a pilot with eight preschool and afterschool programs. In 2022, there are approximately 50 Seattle preschools, serving 2,000 children ages 3-5 years old. The original preschool and chef are still a part of the program.