Madison Food Policy Council Announces “SEED” Grant Recipients

Tuesday, March 4, 2014 - 2:27pm

The City of Madison Food Policy Council announces the inaugural SEED Grant recipients. SEED Grants are small grants designed to support new and recently emerging projects or programs that support access to healthy food in our community.

The City of Madison 2014 Budget includes $50,000 in grant funds to be given out by the Madison Food Policy Council. Twenty-six proposals were submitted for a total funding request of $181,464.50. All proposals were evaluated by the Funding Working Group of the Madison Food Policy Council, comprised of members Satya Rhodes-Conway, Topf Wells, and Ald. Shiva Bidar-Sielaff.

"Thank you to all of the applicants, especially those that took the time to present to the committee. It was a challenge to stretch the funds that were available to us," said Ald. Bidar-Sielaff. "The best part about the proposals is that they weren't just about food; these programs and projects are about building community while improving access to healthy food."

A total of ten proposals were selected, all of which responded to the Food Policy Council request to respond to one of the "short-term program programs/policies/actions" outlined in the Healthy Food for All Children 10-year Plan, created by the United Way of Dane County, the Community Action Coalition of South Central Wisconsin, and the Goodman Foundation. The plan can be found on the United Way of Dane County website. The details of the proposals can be found below.

"I really appreciate the work of members of the Food Policy Council who had the challenging job of making difficult decisions from twenty-six excellent proposals," said Mayor Paul Soglin. "I would also like to thank all of the applicants for their commitment to increasing access to healthy, affordable food."

"We are excited to fund these proposals for 2014, but it is important to note that over $121,000 in new or existing programming will go unfunded," the Mayor continued. "This raises the larger question of how we can partner with other community stakeholders to deliver funds for these important initiatives."

The recommendations are to be considered by the Madison Food Policy Council on March 5th and the Madison Common Council on March 18th. Funds are subject to approval by both bodies.

2014 SEED Grant Recipients (Recommendations of the working group):

  • Madison Public Library Foundation, Inc., “Good Snack Club”:  up to $6,750 to create a new pilot program for afterschool youth in the Meadowood neighborhood to provide nutritious snack options at the library and neighborhood center.
  • REAP Food Group, Inc., “Improving School Access to Fresh Produce via Salad Bars”:  up to $7,200 to purchase and install refrigeration equipment at two elementary schools, Lincoln and Orchard Elementary, to implement daily salad bars as a part of the school lunch program.
  • Bayview Foundation, Inc., “Brittingham Farmers’ Market:  up to $6,250 to establish a farmers’ market at Brittingham Park through staffing for market coordination, promotion of the event, and basic supplies for the market.
  • Vera Court Neighborhood Center, Inc., “Vera Court Community Garden”:  up to $5,900 to establish a community garden in the Vera Court community, directly behind Mendota Elementary School.  Most funds will go towards the build out of raised garden beds.
  • Madison Area Food Pantry Gardens, Inc., “Improve Food Handling Flexcon Totes”:  up to $1,225 for the purchase of flexcon totes to improve transportation and handling of produce from pantry gardens to food pantries.
  • FairShare CSA Coalition, Inc., “Partnership pilot program to increase low-income household CSA membership”:  up to $1,900 to provide printing, translation, and presenter assistance to go towards the establishment of a pilot program to increase CSA membership among low-income households.
  • Center for Non-Profits, School of Human Ecology, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Board of Regents for University of Wisconsin System, “Slow Food Odyssey for Growing Community Power in South Madison”:  up to $3,291 for the establishment of three fall “Odyssey” dinners and outreach at said dinners to increase participation in the Growing Power farmers’ market basket program.
  • Akira Toki Middle School, Madison Metropolitan School District, “Growing a Healthy Meadowood Community (Learning to Grow & Growing to Learn):  up to $5,092 to expand the school garden, purchase supplies, support curriculum development, and support publicity of the programming.
  • Irwin A. and Robert D. Goodman Community Center, Inc., “Healthful Access Program”:  up to $5,092 to expand food pantry hours, add childcare services, and provide cooking demos at the Goodman Community Center.
  • Spring Rose Growers Cooperative, “Cooperative Harvest for Healthy Communities”:  up to $7,300 to establish a pilot “vegetable voucher” program at two satellite public health clinics.  At the two sites, East Washington Avenue and South Park Street, WIC clients will be able pick-up their benefit checks and also receive vouchers for purchase of seasonal vegetables through the weekly delivery from the Cooperative.


  • Katie Crawley, Mayor's Office, 608-266-4611
Health & Safety, Food