AFP Enhancement Grants Requests for Applications

Application Deadline: April 7, 2014; 5:00 pm (Eastern Daylight Time)
Award decisions will be made within 2 weeks of submission deadline.

Complete RFA (pdf)
Application form (Word document)

If you missed the Q&A session on Tuesday, March 11, you can view a recording here:

Funds Available: Western North Carolina, southwest Virginia, and West Virginia each has $18,000.00 funding for 5/1/2014 – 10/1/2015. Each state is planning to fund up to a maximum of 3 projects. Projects must be completed by October 1, 2015.

Goal: The Appalachian Foodshed Project (AFP) is offering community stakeholders the opportunity to request funds for the purpose of supporting local and/or regional efforts to enhance community food security. We encourage those community partners working towards community food security in West Virginia, western North Carolina, and southwest Virginia to apply. In addition to the overarching goal of this call for applications, each state has identified goals specific to their location and context. Competitive proposals will align with both the AFP goal and the respective state goal(s).

North Carolina: The Western North Carolina Food Security Council has established a common agenda to: “Increase availability and accessibility of safe, local, nutritious and culturally appropriate foods for all people in WNC by:

  1. Increasing the bridging and bonding of food system networks to connect available resources for all. Some elements to consider include: education and policy initiatives, health and nutrition, youth and vulnerable population involvement.
  2. Connecting farmers and growers to food insecure populations in economically viable manners.”

Strategies might include: farmers selling seconds; gleaning; getting people to the markets and markets to the people; community gardens.  North Carolina grants are prioritizing a rural and urban project, as well as projects occurring in Mitchell, Madison, Yancey, Buncombe, Cherokee, Graham, Swain, and Macon counties.

Virginia: Southwest Virginia is interested in projects that increase local food access‐availability and expand a market for local farmers. Some elements to consider include education and policy initiatives, health and nutrition programs, youth involvement, and service providers and end users.

West Virginia: WV seeks projects that improve community food security by promoting consumption, production or marketing of fresh locally grown foods, especially as meets the needs of low‐income or other populations vulnerable to food insecurity.

Priorities: Proposed applications must demonstrate the capacity to contribute towards enhancing place‐based community food security. This involves, at the most basic level, increasing and improving both food access and availability within West Virginia and the Appalachian regions of Virginia and North Carolina. Ideally, a community food security approach will address these issues with consideration for enhancing opportunities for food system stakeholders from the point of production to consumption.

Priority will also be given to applications that aim to enhance the collaborative efforts in a community and build on work that is already happening in the region. We encourage applicants to seek matching funds to support their proposals; however, proposals will first be reviewed on their merit and their alignment with the RFA objectives and specific state goals. Recipients will be expected to share outcomes with the larger AFP community.

AFP‐Community Food Security Background: Community food security can be defined as “a condition in which all community residents obtain a safe, culturally acceptable, nutritionally adequate diet [in a manner] that maximizes community self‐reliance and social justice.” 1

At the AFP Search Conference in March 2012, nutritionists, producers, academics, extension agents, Community Food Security Enhancement Grants RFA; community organizers, and emergency food providers engaged in a discussion about the importance of their work, and the idea of “food security” in our regional context. To guide the conversation, we used the Whole Measures for Community Food Systems as a basis for establishing shared values, vision, and understanding around community food security.

According to AFP participants, community food security involves:

  • Ensuring that healthy food is accessible and available to all community members
  • Empowering communities to determine where/how to focus work for food system change
  • Cultivating ecologically and financially sustainable agriculture
  • Balancing food security and farm security
  • Engaging youth and young people
  • Fostering a healthier community
  • Working for justice and equity

Who Can Apply?  We are seeking applications from community organizations, individuals, and/or groups working around issues of health, nutrition, community development, agriculture, food access, environmental sustainability, etc. in the Appalachian areas of West Virginia, Virginia and North Carolina.

Successful applicants will ideally be those organizations/groups/individuals based in West Virginia and the Appalachia regions of North Carolina and Virginia who have expressed interest in the Appalachian Foodshed Project’s priority to enhance community food systems and community food security. This would include those entities that have previously participated in AFP activity since 2011 (For example: Capacity Building Forum, Search Conference, Community Food Security Workshop, Action Groups, and/or State Meetings), but those not yet involved with AFP may also apply.

Address general questions about the Request for Application to:
Susan Clark, Appalachian Foodshed Project, Project Director
Virginia Tech, Department of Horticulture
tel: 540‐231‐8768

For state-specific questions, please contact:

North Carolina:
Michelle Schroeder-Moreno, Co-Project Director, North Carolina Lead
tel: 919-513-0085

Susan Clark, Project Director, Virginia Lead
tel: 540‐231‐8768

West Virginia:
Cheryl Brown, Co-Project Director, West Virginia Lead
tel: 304-293-5461


Additional Resources

  1. Hamm, M. W., Bellows, A. C. (2003). Community food security and nutrition educators. Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior, 35(1), 37‐43.
  2. Community Food Security Assessment Brief (2013). Appalachian Foodshed Project.
  3. Abi‐Nader et al. (2009). Whole Measures for Community Food Systems: Values‐Based Planning and Evaluation.
  4. Flora et al. (2005). Community capitals: A tool for evaluating strategic interventions and projects.
  5. Emery, M., S. Fey, and C.B. Flora, 2006. “Using Community Capitals to Build Assets for Positive Community Change.” CD Practice 13.
  6. Kania, J. and M. Kramer. (2011). Collective Impact. Stanford Social Innovation Review. Winter 2011: 36‐41.