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Community food co-op is taking root in Silver Springs

By ThisIsReno

SUBMITTED NEWS RELEASE

Silver Springs now has a community-owned store where locals get to make the decisions, create quality jobs, and contribute economically to a local food system and local agriculture.  The Silver Stage Co-Op Association has kicked off a natural foods buying club, and also now has a small store front offering nutritious food at reasonable prices. Remarkably, the Co-Op is already being recognized not only locally, but regionally as well – you’ll find it noted as one of the promising economic development projects in our region on page 15 of the Economic Development Blueprint for Western Nevada  http://www.unce.unr.edu/programs/sites/set/files/pdf/SETBlueprintFinal.pdf

If you want better access to healthy and affordable foods, please come to the next Co-Op meeting on the 2nd Monday of each month at 6:00pm at 3595 Ramsey Weeks in Silver Springs, Nevada. Below you’ll find contact information and a list of the many community projects the Co-Op members are involved in:

The rapidly expanding “grass roots” organization, Silver Stage Co-Op Association, is doing marvelous things in the community.  Some of the Co-Op’s activities include:

Farmers Market. This summer, you may have seen the local farmer’s market at Penny Park. This was brought to our community by the Co-Op in partnership with local farmers, Community Roots and Healthy Communities Coalition. The market accepts cash, USDA Senior Coupons, SNAP, FBNN coupons, etc. The market serves to strengthen the economic  base of the community and encourages local prosperity.

Co-Op Store. This non-profit storefront provides an opportunity to purchase nutritious foods at reasonable prices. During the fall months, the farmers are invited to sell their produce at the store. This is a great convenience for the community. In addition, the work of co-ops like this one have a direct and positive impact on the soil, air and water of our region and expand markets for local farmers.

Food Backpack Program. This program provides food to children of families who have fallen on hard times. Children take backpacks of easy -to -prepare foods home on Fridays. To date, there are about 40 children from the area’s two schools who receive food through the backpack program. The CoOp provides the backpacks, picks up the food from Food For Thought in Carson City, and delivers the filled backpacks to the school, where counselors distribute them to the children with no compromise to privacy.

Hoedown at the Airport’s Fly- In. This event included a pot luck dinner and entertainment by local square dancers. Admission to the event was a donation of canned food. This year the Co-Op collected 140 cans of food for the Silver Stage Food Pantry!

Toys Drive and Pajamas/Clothes Collection.  This initiative will help the children in our community have a brighter holiday season and keep them warm during the winter months. Families who applied will be invited to a snack with Santa and toy distribution on December 15 in Silver Springs. Members from the Silver Stage Co-Op and Silver Stage Pantry worked at the Amazon Warehouse in November in a fundraising program called “Community Gift Wrap.” Groups wrap gifts ordered by Amazon customers, and in turn, Amazon pays the group 70 cents per wrapped gift. The group earned $640.00 to go towards our Toy Drive and Snacks with Santa. A big thank you to all who donated their time to this worthwhile endeavor!

Community Gardens. In the spring, the Co-Op hopes to establish an organic community garden and will invite members to grow their own food.

Interested in getting involved?

There are several ways you can get involved:

  • Volunteer. We need volunteers to help with all of the initiatives listed above. Whether you have one hour or several hours to volunteer, we need your help.
  • Join the Co-Op or buy a gift certificate for someone else. For $20 per year, you can shop at the store and take advantage of buying healthy food. We now have gift certificates for Co-Op membership that you can buy as holiday gifts for your neighbors and friends.
  • Tell Your Neighbor. The Co-Op will thrive if we get the community involved… “neighbor helping neighbor.” We all benefit by its success! We now have flyers that you can share that provide information about all the wonderful things that the Co-Op does with the community.

Contact: If you wish to volunteer, join the Co-Op or need more information, please email us at [email protected] or come to our next meeting. Meetings are held on the second Monday of each month at 6:00 p.m.  on 3595 Ramsey Weeks in Silver Springs. The Silver Stage Co-Op Association is a nonprofit partner of the regional Coalition, Healthy Communities.

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