kalish9Anything worth doing is worth doing together, and we can go so much farther when we share the load. Partnerships with organizations such as Rural Action and their Chesterhill Produce Auction help our little organization extend our reach and think beyond our limited staff capacity to fulfill our impact goals.

Building a strong local food system in Southeast Ohio takes dedication and partnership. On October 4th, (from left to right in the photo above) Chesterhill Village Councilman Ken Peters, Rural Action CEO Michelle Decker, Ohio Secretary of State Liaison Bob Kalish, Chesterhill Produce Auction Manager Tom Redfern, Morgan County Commissioner Adam Shriver, Community Food Initiatives Executive Director Mary Nally gathered as the office of Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted was honoring the Chesterhill Produce Auction in their Ohio Business Profiles. We are so proud of Rural Action and the Chesterhill Produce Auction for being recognized by the Ohio Secretary of State for their success. The Chesterhill Produce Auction is an essential partner for the Donation Station program, helping us purchase over 34,000 pounds of food for food pantries in 5 SE Ohio Counties so far this year! 


Sometimes, though, things can come back to haunt you, such as those 30,000 plus pounds of seed potatoes we distributed in March. We received a call a few weeks ago that a farmer had planted those seed potatoes and now wanted to donate 2,000 pounds of potatoes, ready to eat! We LOVE these kinds of problems at Community Food Initiatives! Our staff and trusty volunteers picked them up in Vinton County and happily distributed them to the 42 food pantries and agencies our Donation Station program serves. Now folks across SE Ohio are enjoying hearty meals thanks to their neighbors with big hearts!