Good news for those who love to cook and those who need that good food the most: The State of Vermont has granted an extension through April 1, 2022, for Vermont Everyone Eats (VEE), the innovative COVID-19 response program that provides meal assistance to Vermonters while supporting local restaurants, farmers, and food producers.
The program is operated in the Upper Valley by the VEE “hub” Upper Valley Everyone Eats (UVEE), administered by Vital Communities. Since September of 2020, with the partnership of over 45 Upper Valley food assistance distribution partners, UVEE has distributed over 147,000 meals to Upper Valley Vermonters experiencing food insecurity. The program pays partner restaurants $10/meal, meaning the volume of meals today equates to nearly $1.5M in revenue for our hard-hit local restaurants—a much needed form of stimulus in these challenging times. Ten local restaurants have prepared meals for UVEE since the program began; current participating restaurants and food businesses include Global Village Foods (Quechee), The Little Grille (Bradford), Maple Street Catering (White River Junction). Tacocat (Randolph), and the Windsor Diner (Windsor).
Vermont Everyone Eats was inspired by grassroots initiatives from communities across Vermont. Originally designed as a five-month program, VEE has been extended multiple times to mitigate high levels of food insecurity and economic instability exacerbated by the COVID-19 crisis. In July 2020, Vermont lawmakers allocated funds from the Coronavirus Relief Fund to launch Vermont Everyone Eats and the program was subsequently extended with FEMA funding. Vermont Everyone Eats is operated through a network of community hubs located throughout the state. Since the start of Vermont Everyone Eats, 14 community hubs have worked with 260 restaurants sourcing ingredients from over 300 farmers to distribute over 1.9 million meals to Vermonters all over the state.
To enroll in Everyone Eats, contact UVEE’s Hub Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org. To learn more about UVEE, visit vitalcommunities.org/uvee.
For more information about Vermont Everyone Eats visit www.vteveryoneeats.org or explore community posts at #vteveryoneeats.