The Vermont Youth Conservation Corps Health Care Share: An Immunization for the Future
In 2012, The Farm at VYCC partnered with Central Vermont Medical Center (CVMC) to pilot the Health Care Share (HCS), a food security initiative that provides farm fresh produce and poultry to families in need. In 2013, the University of Vermont Medical Center (then Fletcher Allen Health Care), joined the program. Medical providers identify patient and employee families who are unable to afford or access fresh, nutritious food. Families enrolled in the HCS receive a weekly allotment of fresh produce, information on food storage and preparation, and increased access to nutritional counseling.
The HCS relies on a constellation of local partners passionate about effecting change in our communities. Medical centers, public schools, and corporate volunteer groups along with the Vermont Department of Labor, Vermont Foodbank, and Hunger Free Vermont all provide support for the HCS. These combined efforts and interests build a program that benefits both the community and the individual. In addition to providing food insecure families with high quality produce and poultry, this reciprocal relationship supports youth education and employment on the Farm.