Community Food Initiatives works to ensure that everyone has access to healthy local food. Our belief is that by naming our assets—soil,seeds and an Appalachian heritage of food production and preservation—everyone in Southeast Ohio can see their place in strengthening our community.
As a 22 year old membership based non-profit, Community Food Initiatives is deeply connected in the region. CFI is long-time a team player within the local food system as we believe that we benefit when others succeed because that is how community works.
All donations are tax deductible, and you don’t need to have a PayPal account.
CFI manages community gardens and provide garden space, tools, water, mulch and monthly work parties. These gardens inspire community connections and increase access to fresh food.
Taught by volunteer community members, participants get hands-on learning on basic organic gardening techniques, community orchard topics, seed saving and food preservation methods in this year-round series.
True food security starts with locally sourced regionally hardy seeds. We maintain an inventory of local seeds, host exchanges, provide seed saving workshops and are piloting a regional seed company. CFI also gives away seed packets, plant starts across the region.
We support over a dozen youth gardens in public schools, day care centers and agencies. Providing resource support for teachers and staff, teaching Discovery Garden lessons to students, CFI expects to see youth gardens thrive, teaching our young people where their food comes from and how it can be part of their future.
CFI collects, purchases and distributes food from the Athens Farmers Market and Chesterhill Produce Auction to over 40 food pantries and social service agencies. Often, we are their only source of fresh produce. In 2014, CFI contributed $14,720 to the local food economy and distributed 79,452.5 pounds of food to those in need.
These healthy cooking classes using seasonal ingredients help educate food pantry patrons on how what we eat impacts our health, and how to cook healthy meals from scratch. Over 200 people were reached at 25 different sites in 2014.
The following map shows where CFI’s programs are located, including: our main office (yellow-coded pins), community (green) and school (red) gardens, and the Donation Station (blue). To locate specific pins, please click on this icon in the upper left corner of the maps:
94 Columbus Road
Athens Ohio 45701
We are located in the Appalachian Center for Economic Networks (ACEnet).