Massachusetts Organizations Receive Grants through Maine Council on Aging and Hannaford Supermarkets’ Connection, Health and Equity Through Food (CHEF) Program

May 8, 2024

In the first of two micro-grant cycles, the Maine Council on Aging (MCOA) has awarded nearly $376,000 through Hannaford Supermarkets’ Connection, Health and Equity Through Food (CHEF) program to 51 organizations in Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, and New York. The grants are being used to improve the health and well-being of older adults in the five-state region. The final micro-grant cycle is now open, and applications are being accepted online until June 30.

The following projects from Massachusetts received awards:

  • African Cultural Services Inc. / Africano “Food as Fuel” Program $ 8,000 Waltham MA
  • Mill City Grows Mill City Grows Mobile Farmers Market $10,000 Lowell MA
  • Stone Soup Café Technology for grocery shopping/assistance program $10,700 Greenfield MA
  • Urban Farming Institute “Fit Around the Farm” & “Black Men’s Gathering” programs $10,000 Mattapan MA

The Maine Council on Aging highlighted Urban Farming Institute in Mattapan, which transforms neglected land into community gardens that create green-collar jobs for residents, engages people in growing food, and is building a healthier, more locally-based food system in Roxbury, Dorchester, and Mattapan – home to two-thirds of Boston’s Black population. Urban Farming Institute is using the grant funding for their Fit Around the Farm and Black Men’s Gathering programs which provide people of color with increased access to healthy food, nutrition education, exercise, and social connections. President & CEO Pat Spence thanked MCOA and Hannaford for the grant adding, “We have dedicated ourselves to completely involving our seniors in urban farming, eating locally grown fresh food, and encouraging them to share their wisdom as we develop future programs for their health and well-being. The key is for our seniors to have total involvement in the design of all elder programs and to make sure they are included in all our activities, as if we could stop them!”