Fresh Bucks Program starting up on Orcas as a solution to hunger

— from Kyle Dodd, San Juan County Health & Community Services —

Fresh Bucks Program starting on Orcas Island – Island grown solutions to ending hunger.

Fresh Bucks is now offering discounts on fruits and vegetables up to $20 every time you shop at the Orcas Food Co-op. The Fresh Bucks Program’s goal is for everyone to have access to fresh, healthy, local food.

The Fresh Bucks program is a partnership with the Orcas Community Resource Center, San Juan County Health and Community Services, and Orcas Food Co-op helping low-income families stretch their dollars to make healthy food more affordable and investing in our local farms and community.

To enroll in Fresh Bucks, an individual or family must meet the income requirements to qualify for Basic Food, formerly known as food stamps. Basic Food is available to individuals and families who are for example earning less than $4,183 a month ($50,196/year) for a family of four. Basic food and WIC participants are automatically eligible for Fresh Bucks. Orcas Island is also offering the Fresh Bucks incentive to local residents that
qualify for Basic Food based on their income, but are not enrolled.

How it Works
Enrollment forms can be picked up either at the Orcas Food Co-op or the Orcas Community Resource Center. Participants can redeem up to $20 in Fresh Bucks discounts every time they shop. Example: purchase $40 of fruits and vegetables and get $20 Fresh Bucks discount, your total cost is $20.

Interested in learning more or helping support the Fresh Bucks or other Food Assistance Programs please contact the Health Department at 360-
378-4474 or the Orcas Community Resource Center 360-376-3184.

Eligible items include all local produce as well as Co+op Basics produce items.

This material was funded in part by USDA’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program – SNAP. This institution is an equal opportunity provider.

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Learner Limbach

I’m so stoked that we were able to launch this program. Two weeks are in the books and so far there are 13 households enrolled accounting for 34 individuals. Participants are receiving half off their Local and Basics produce purchases at the co-op. That means they are eating better and stretching their dollars further. If you or someone you know could benefit from this program please send them our way or to the Orcas Community Resource Center!