NEWS

Join a team that is passionate about changing the local food system in Southern Wisconsin. REAP Food Group, a non-profit organization based in Madison, WI, believes that increasing the purchase of local food by schools, restaurants and institutions strengthens our regional economy, improves health outcomes of our residents and builds connections between rural and urban communities. REAP Food Group is seeking candidates to fill four (4) 50% time AmeriCorps Nutrition Educator positions with the Farm to School Program. Each position is a one-year appointment with a 900-hour commitment (an average of 20 hours/week). The position will begin August 15, 2018 and end August 14, 2019. Members will be under contract with the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction’s state-wide Farm to School AmeriCorps program and will be under direct supervision of REAP staff to continue and expand upon existing farm to school programming in Madison Metropolitan School District. REAP AmeriCorps members will be based out of REAP Food Group’s office in downtown Madison, Wisconsin and will report directly to the REAP Farm to School Education Coordinator. Work hours will fall primarily between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. from Monday through Friday. It is imperative that members have availability during these hours on at least 3 days per week. Occasional weekend and evening hours may be required. REAP AmeriCorps members will work with elementary, middle-, and high-school students; as well as teachers, farmers, food service personnel, parents, and a wide range of community partners on REAP Farm to School Program implementation within the Madison Metropolitan School District (MMSD). AmeriCorps Educators will develop and implement farm to school and nutrition lessons to educate children about the benefits of making healthy eating choices. Educators also introduce fresh local foods through tastings, chef in the classroom programs, and other in-class activities. They will connect farmers to the classroom through in-class programming and work closely with teachers, school staff, and REAP staff to arrange and develop lessons. REAP AmeriCorps members are part of a larger network of WI Farm to School AmeriCorps members who implement farm to school programs at sites around Wisconsin. Specific Duties: ● Prepare and teach farm to school and nutrition lessons to elementary students in Madison schools ● Help promote local foods and farms through lunchroom activities and communications to school staff and families ● Assist with preparation and processing of fruits and vegetables for REAP Farm to School Snack Program ● Assist with cooking classes and REAP’s Chef in the Classroom Program in Madison middleand high-schools ● Provide feedback on lesson plans and develop lesson materials ● Develop materials and assist at community and school events and assemblies Required qualifications: ● Passion for inspiring healthful eating among youth and for promoting local, sustainable agriculture ● Ability to work independently in a fast-paced, flexible work setting ● Ability to provide one’s own transportation for work purposes ● Strong interpersonal and problem-solving skills in a team setting ● Strong verbal and written communication skills ● Working knowledge of word processing, spreadsheet software and the internet ● Possession of a valid Wisconsin Driver’s License ● Must be at least 18 years of age and have a high school diploma or equivalent ● Must be a U.S. Citizen, U.S. National, or lawful permanent resident...

Students who don’t have sufficient food access receive two meals per day at school, but what happens to these children while they are on summer vacation?   The Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) steps in.   According to George Reistad, Madison’s Food and Policy Coordinator, the program, which launched Monday, provides free meals for students when school is not in session. The U.S. Department of Agriculture funds the SFSP, and REAP Food Group partners with the city of Madison, the Madison Metropolitan School District, Madison Parks, Public Health Madison and Dane County and Centro Hispano to administer the meal service. READ MORE   ...

NEWS 3 - Come this weekend, school's out for summer for the thousands of Madison Metropolitan School District students. While months of vacation spell lots of fun for kids, they can also be a time of struggle for families, who are unable to afford food. Luckily, a local food group is stepping in to help. During the school year, REAP's farm-to-school snack program brings locally-grown fruits and vegetables to more than 300 classrooms at 11 Madison-area elementary schools. But their work doesn't end once the cafeterias and classrooms clear out for the summer. WATCH THE FULL SEGMENT...

MADISON, WI – Farm Fresh Atlas, which began as a regional guide, is now a statewide collaborative resource to find farm-fresh foods wherever you go in Wisconsin. The atlas makes it easy to buy directly from the farmer, farmers’ markets, retail shops and restaurants that feature farm-fresh selections. Farm Fresh Atlas was created in 2002 by REAP Food Group, a nonprofit located in Madison, Wisconsin, to promote sustainable, local food producers in southern Wisconsin. The individual atlases previously featured five regional areas of Wisconsin, in print and online portals. Now all five regions have come together under one umbrella. “Wisconsin is known for its sustainable family farms and world-class food producers and we want to celebrate that bounty. We were awarded a grant in 2016 from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) to develop and promote a unified, statewide website,” said Helen Sarakinos, Executive Director for REAP Food Group. “The enhanced collaborative website (farmfreshatlas.org) is live and available for the public, farmers and restauranteurs who enjoy local food resources throughout our bountiful state. You can now find everything you need in one location.” The website currently features: 382 - Farmers & Food Producers 225 - Farmers' Markets 82 - Restaurants/restauranteurs & bakeries 52 - Retailers who sell local food 37 - Organizations that support local growers   Each listed farm and business commits to the Farm Fresh Atlas pledge to ensure they practice environmental sustainability, treat workers fairly, and sell products that are grown or produced on a family or cooperatively-owned farm. “We encourage everyone to visit the website,” continued Sarakinos. “Whether you’re a visitor to our state in search of the freshest produce, a dairy producer who wants to share your amazing products or a restauranteur who wants to connect with local producers, the Farm Fresh Atlas will help you find what you need. Our numbers are growing every day as more people discover the foods that make Wisconsin one of the most bountiful agricultural states.” Farm Fresh Atlas is a trademark of REAP Food Group, Inc., used with permission by grassroots coalitions throughout Wisconsin to produce: Farm Fresh Atlas of Eastern Wisconsin, Western Wisconsin Farm Fresh Atlas, Farm Fresh Atlas of Southeastern Wisconsin, Southern Wisconsin Farm Fresh Atlas, and Central Wisconsin Farm Fresh Atlas....

MADISON (WKOW) -- The Madison Metropolitan School District and "REAP" Food Group rolled out a new farm-to-table food truck on Tuesday at La Follette High School. The "Uproot" Food Truck provides lunches made from local produce. SEE/READ MORE...

Madison.com - As the warmer, spring weather bought a much-needed reprieve to James Madison Memorial High School students this week, so did a fresh, fun option for school lunch. This week, REAP Food Group and the Madison Metropolitan School District launched Uproot by Reap, a food truck that will serve healthy, locally sourced lunch options for Madison high school students. The truck will rotate between Madison’s four comprehensive high schools Tuesday through Friday, spending one day at each campus. READ MORE ...

Wisconsin State Journal - A brightly colored food truck will rotate among the high schools in the Madison School District at lunchtime to offer students a popular way to grab lunch with locally sourced food. The school district and REAP Food Group will be serving lunches from the UpRoot by REAP food truck, which was unveiled last week at La Follette High School. On the first day, the menu was a Cuban chicken rice bowl featuring locally grown sweet potatoes. Students also could grab an apple or orange. READ MORE ...

Public News Service - A new food truck could be the answer to the school-lunch challenges that Madison-area high schools face. An open campus means only 25 percent of high-school students eat lunch at school, even though about half qualify for free or reduced-price meals. When they eat off-campus, they don't necessarily make the healthiest choices. That's where the Uproot Food Truck comes in, as a "cooler," locally-sourced and healthy lunch option. READ MORE...

MADISON ESSENTIALS -- It’s never too early to talk about the summer food programs for children operated by Madison Metropolitan School District (MMSD), Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction, and Second Harvest Foodbank of Southern Wisconsin. And now the conversation includes how REAP Food Group and YMCA of Dane County are using food trucks to change the way healthy food is being distributed.. READ FULL ARTICLE...