(Rochester, MN) – May 24th, 2022 — Channel One recently received a $75,000 grant from Mayo Clinic to support Channel One’s mission of strengthening food access and building healthy communities. This gift is also intended to help Olmsted County residents facing financial stress, a leading local community health priority according to the Olmsted County Community Health Needs Assessment (CHNA).
Every three years, Olmsted County partners conduct a needs assessment, which aims to learn about the health status of Olmsted County residents and identify areas for improvement. Channel One acknowledges that the disparities outlined in the CHNA are often connected– particularly overall health, income and access to food. In other words, those facing poverty or other financial stress may also be impacted by chronic health concerns or food insecurity.
In Olmsted County, 7.7% of residents could have experienced food insecurity in 2021, up from 6.8% pre-pandemic. Meanwhile, child food insecurity is also on the rise. 11.5% of children in Olmsted County could have experienced food insecurity in 2021, up from 10.3% pre-pandemic.
“The health issues that residents of Olmsted County are facing do not take place in a vacuum,” explained Jessica Sund, Director of Development and Communications at Channel One, “there are so many people facing financial difficulties right now due the supply chain challenges and increased costs of necessities. When you can’t afford basic necessities– like food, utilities, transportation, medical treatment and housing– it impacts every aspect of your life.”
According to statewide survey data, the top 5 items most requested from food shelf visitors are meat, poultry and fish; fresh produce; dairy; eggs; and cooking and baking supplies. Each of these items has seen a jump in price over the last year, making it more expensive for Channel One to provide healthy food options for clients and shoppers.
“Mayo Clinic’s grant funding will enable Channel One to continue providing hunger relief amidst rising food costs,” Jessica continued, “That, in turn, improves the overall health of our community.”
ABOUT CHANNEL ONE REGIONAL FOOD BANK
Channel One Regional Food Bank, a member of Feeding America, strengthens food access and builds healthy communities. Channel One operates food programs to serve local and area needs such as: a food bank, a food shelf, mobile pantries, Childhood Hunger Programs, and the Nutrition Assistance Program for Seniors (NAPS). Channel One Regional Food Bank mobilizes organizations, volunteers, and donors to serve the network of more than 200 nonprofit programs that provide food for children, adults, and families in need. Channel One serves 14 counties across southeastern Minnesota and western Wisconsin. For more information, call 507.287.2350 or visit helpingfeedpeople.org