The Kanawha Institute for Social Research and Action, also known as KISRA, has received nearly $800,000 from the Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Community Services.
The funds are being used to establish a food hub, which will promote community health, support local food production/farm enterprises, and create jobs, according to KISRA CEO, Reggie Jones.
“This is just an ideal partnership between two nonprofits whose missions are so closely aligned,” said Jones. “We believe this initiative will serve as a model for other areas in the state.”
The new initiative is called the Appalachian Food Enterprise. It is a partnership between KISRA and Pollen8, Inc. Both nonprofits are dedicated to promoting healthy living and helping people transitioning back into society after incarceration or treatment for Substance Use Disorder.
The project will create 42 full-time jobs for low-income community residents, with an emphasis on those in recovery.
The Appalachian Food Enterprise consists of a network of related food enterprises that specialize in bringing food from farm-to-table from local sources.
Café Appalachia, which is part of Pollen8, LLC., will use the organic produce – the bulk of which will be grown at Paradise Farms at KISRA – and other food items for the café, a catering service, and a food truck, The Daily Harvest.