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Heifer International U.S. Program activities focus on integrated efforts that close the gap between healthy, nutritious food and the communities it can most benefit. Our project work, including education and advocacy efforts, supports building and strengthening sustainable community food systems—aligning with our belief that healthy food should be accessible to everyone.

The Work of Heifer International U.S. Program

Heifer International U.S. Program partners with local farmers to support and strengthen their numbers and capacity, along with increase their sustainable production. Additionally, working with individuals, families, communities and partner organizations, Heifer International U.S. Program will support systemic change to increase community economic development and improve the health, nutrition and well-being of our children.

In defining the program's work, Heifer has explored food economies in Arkansas and Appalachia, two areas of high genuine need in the United States. Within this frame there is enormous potential within the food system to address issues of food insecurity and to build sustainable livelihoods.

Heifer will provide support to communities in developing and implementing locally-appropriate strategies that:

  • Re-localize food systems to create living wage jobs by working with small producers, processors and community food entrepreneurs. These may include food aggregators, value-added processors, food distributors and retailers, local food restaurants and myriad other enterprises within the food system.
  • Permanently improve access to nutritious, locally-produced food among food insecure populations. A number of strategies might be explored for this, including farm-to-school programs, mobile neighborhood markets, local food pantries and partnering with large retail markets.

Heifer's domestic program, for example, builds on the emerging local foods movement to foster economic development and improve access to nutritious, locally-produced food among food insecure populations. The initiative will work with farmers to design and implement sustainable community food systems projects. These create opportunities in sustainable agriculture and community food enterprises for low-income families; improve access to healthy food; and improve the environment by supporting responsible agricultural practices.

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