The 2014 Woodland Park Summer Farmers’ Market is off to a great start. Although the objectives for the internship are set forth nicely, our work plan is still in process. The major projects for me so far include assisting with running the weekly market, working to expand participation in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) there, and coordinating the recycling program
The most exciting part of the internship is assisting with market operations each Friday. Interacting with vendors and patrons is enjoyable and the market managers and volunteers have been very helpful. The morning begins with a flurry of activity as we get things going, and then the pace slows down a bit. At the end, the vendors line up with their tax forms and envelopes for market bucks and SNAP dollars, and the excitement begins again!
Recycling is a challenge because of the need for education about what qualifies as recyclable material. Persistence with making signs and placing the signs and bins strategically will hopefully pay off in more recycling and less trash. Just getting people to place trash and recycling in the proper bins would be a tremendous improvement.
Wednesday I took my first step toward expanding SNAP participation at the market. I met with the WIC Coordinator at Teller County Public Health to discuss options for motivating her clients who qualify for SNAP to utilize it at the market. I look forward to continuing those efforts to increase consumption of fresh, local, organic produce by that population.