Help Spread the Word About Double Up Food Bucks, A New Program to Help SNAP Recipients Purchase More Fruits and Vegetables!
July Update: The Double Up Food Bucks (DUFB) has launched at the French Broad Food Coop!  Bountiful Cities was awarded funding from the WNC

Community Foundation for this pilot to increase access to fruits and 
DUFB Eligible Produce on Display!
vegetables for SNAP recipients. The DUFB program awards a dollar for each SNAP dollar used to purchase locally grown produce. These dollars can then be spent to purchase any other fruit and veggies purchased from the same establishment.
The program had a soft roll-out in late June to insure there were no difficulties with the technology and logistics before broadly promoting. After only 3 weeks the program is running very smoothly.  And despite only word-of-mouth promotion, 86 individuals have signed up over 100 transactions, well beyond what was expected at this point. The waiver process from the USDA is well-underway and we anticipate the West Village Market to come on board as the second market in the next few weeks.
This 2017 pilot is an exciting scaleable effort to develop a successful model in WNC in preparation for submitting a USDA Food Insecurity Nutrition Initiative (FINI) grant in 2018 to expand to more retail outlets in Buncombe and surrounding counties. Eventually this is expected to be a statewide initiative and conversations are underway with Durham and Wilmington.  Moving forward MountainWise, a non-profit serving the counties west of Buncombe, will be the lead agency in this effort as DUFB expands initially into Haywood County.  
The Ask for July:
We continue to need you to help us identify volunteers to serve as Double Up Liaisons.  These volunteers should be SNAP recipients and individuals who need 20 volunteer hours a week to maintain their SNAP eligibility.  Take a look at the Double Up Volunteer flyer,  print it off, and share it with individuals that might be a good fit for this opportunity.
We also welcome you to begin letting individuals know about the program and how they can participate. Click here to download a flyer to share.  The plan is to begin larger outreach efforts as soon as the West Village Market location launches. 
 For more information on the Double Up program, take a look at this article written by the Mountain Xpress!
Riverside Rail Crossing Injury & Incident Reporting
Asheville on Bikes is working with Vice-Mayor Gwen Wisler on a bicycle injury / incident report regarding the rail crossing at 440 Riverside Rd. If you have had an incident or been injured, or have witnessed somebody having an incident or injury while crossing these tracks on a bike, please share information regarding your experience with Asheville on Bikes and Vice-Mayor Wisler. AoB will not share your information with any agency unless we receive permission from you
 Hands On Asheville School Supply Drive
Hands On Asheville is already halfway through their Annual Summer School Supply Drive, where they collect school supplies for kids whose families may struggle to afford everything that these kids need to begin a successful school year.
This year, they’ve ramped things up and set hopes and goals even higher than last year with the plan to send a full 2000 students back to school with everything they need for a successful school year. But they still need all the help they can get, and there is still plenty of time for you to get involved.
Visit www.roonga.com/uwabcssd, to find the easy-to-navigate online drive, allowing you to simply purchase the items you wish to donate, without ever having to go to the store. Everything that has gone through Roonga will be delivered to the Hands On Asheville office where it will sorted and packed for delivery to students.
If you want to take the decision-making out of it and have Hands On purchase the supplies instead, consider a cash donation via the Donate Link on their website. Every little bit helps!
 The Ask: 
Visit handsonasheville.org/schoolsupplydrive to learn more about the School Supply Drive, and if you have questions or want any kind of additional information, please reach out—they're are happy to help. The drive ends July 28th so don’t wait too long to get started!
Be Part of Open Streets Asheville 2017!
Please consider having your organization at the table as we promote a healthy Buncombe County through play, physical activity and building community
Our Sunday afternoon inaugural 2016 Open Streets Asheville hosted 1500 in a 1 1/2 mile car-free park-like setting on downtown streets filled with neighbors, movement and community offerings from 50+ businesses and organizations. Participants experienced everything from yoga, dance, bicycle skills education, four square, soccer, pop-up cardboard playgrounds to creating murals and listening to music. Businesses offered special promotions, expanded into the street or hosted engaging activities such as knitting circles or creating a stamped leather bracelet for the price of 10 jumping jacks. 
July Update: We have an exciting new downtown route for this year stretching from Pritchard Park to Pack Square Park.  This year we want to be more intentional about highlighting our messages of Stay Safe, Get Moving, Know Your Neighbors, Design Your City, and Get Healthy and their will be 5 different themed areas along the route. Teams are are being recruiting sidewalk and street partners, lining up volunteers, planning engagement and evaluation activities, identifying sponsors and working on marketing.  
 The Ask for July:
Please consider participating. If your organization can provide an engaging activity that is consistent with one of our theme areas let us know.  We're happy to help you explore how you can get involved and we've made it easy to start the conversation on our Get Involved page with a simple form to submit questions or ask one of our team to contact you.  We also hope you will share this information with other organizations that would make good partners or sponsors.  A good start is to simply direct people to the Open Streets Asheville webpage or social media to learn more.
Please also spread to word to technology-savvy youth about our contest to animate the Open Streets Asheville logo and inspire our community to get moving and feel great. Awards and a film screening of submissions will take place at the Grail Movie House on September 3rd.  
If you would like to be involved, please contact terri.march@mahec.net. 
Say Thank You to the Buncombe County School Board for the Super Summer Meals Program & Help Spread the Word!
Children First Communities in Schools has put together a Thank You petition for the Buncombe County School board for the Super Summer Meals program and they would love your assistance in garnering signatures through your networks. In August/Sept. we will send this thank you letter to Buncombe County school board.
 The Ask:
Encourage those in your networks to send a thank you by sharing this information in your newsletters or social media  Here' language you can use:
Through the free & reduced meals program, our schools are on the front lines of making sure that children receive healthy meals.  In the summer months, children receiving these meals at school are at higher risk of food insecurity. To address this serious threat to child health, Buncombe County Schools began running a Super Summer Meals program. Last summer, the program served 89,000 meals to children across the county.

Please take a moment to sign this Thank you petition to the leadership at Buncombe County Schools for prioritizing and supporting Super Summer Meals once again in 2017  bit.ly/2sTT1eX

If you want to do some further research on the Summer Meals program, please feel free to go to our website at http://childrenfirstcisbc.org/2016/07/buncombe-countys-super-summer-meals-alleviates-summer-food-insecurity-for-children/ to read an article about this program. 
Calling Artist Across the Country to Visualize Health Equity
The National Academy of Medicine is calling on artists of all kinds to explore what health equity means to communities across the country.This project is part of the NAM’s Culture of Health Program, sponsored by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, which is working to identify strategies that support equitable good health for all Americans. Artwork submitted for this project will help us understand what people across the country see as the most important health challenges and opportunities facing their communities. The insights we gain will be shared with a national audience and used to inform future directions of the Culture of Health Program.
The Ask:
The Share this information with artists you know and with your networks.  You can read more about this project and submit an application at the National Academy of Medicines Visualize Health Equity webpage.  
The submission deadline is September 4th 

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