Community Food

Program Details

The Food & Health Volunteer Corps connects interested volunteers to community food projects working to increase access to healthy food in the region. The program is supported by a Volunteer Generation Fund grant through the New York State Office of Children and Family Services. Partners include: Otsego 2000/Cooperstown Farmers’ Market, Tioga Opportunities, Inc. and VINES: Volunteers Improving Neighborhood Environments.


Current Partner Projects

Tioga School District Tiger Farm & Harvest Celebration: The Tiger Farm is a living learning lab where students apply classroom lessons and learn where food comes from. Volunteers will work on the planning, preparation, and implementation of the annual Harvest Celebration at Tioga School District.  

VINES Farm Share: VINES Farm Share brings healthy, fresh food directly to Broome County Neighborhoods. Volunteers will aid in the distribution of produce boxes at Farm Share pick up sites and provide food and nutrition education to members.

VINES Urban Farm Expansion: Started in 2010, The Binghamton Urban Farm provides healthy, affordable food to local residents and combats the pervasiveness of urban blight in the downtown region. Produce from the Urban Farm is distributed through Farm Share and through the CHOW Fresh Markets – mobile, low/no cost produce and grocery markets serving urban and rural Broome County. Volunteers will assist with the sustainability, expansion, and production of VINES’ Urban Farm through planning, construction, planting, harvesting, and maintenance.

Cooperstown Farmers’ Market SNAP Outreach: Founded in 1991 by Otsego 2000, the Cooperstown Farmers’ Market serves as an outlet for local farmers and producers. Volunteers will help in the creation and distribution of outreach materials and provide education on available resources, including SNAP and matching programs at the farmers’ market.

Interested in getting involved with one of the projects currently being supported by the Food & Health Volunteer Corps? Please contact Tom Lewis, Community Food Coordinator at


Community Cafes

We provide support to community groups and organizations interested in hosting community discussions centered around food insecurity and access, ensuring diverse representation in the local food system, and connecting people to local food assets. Community Cafes typically last around two hours and encourage audience engagement and feedback.



Poverty Simulations

The poverty simulation experience is designed to help participants begin to understand what it might be like to live in a typical low-income family trying to survive from month to month. The simulations are based on the Community Action Poverty Simulation toolkit and implemented by the Food and Health Network along with other Rural Health Network staff, AmeriCorps members, and volunteers. We specialize in simulations with a rural focus and an emphasis on the difficulties of food access.

Contact Us

If you are interested in hosting a community cafe or poverty simulation please contact Tom Lewis, Community Food Coordinator at



Community Food Resources


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