(Información en Español)
To complement the efforts of the Montgomery County Food Security Task Force, the County Council, the Department of Health and Human Services and the many dedicated food assistance providers who have worked tirelessly to increase access to food for county residents during the pandemic, the Montgomery County Food Council will continue hosting a series of virtual trainings presented by local experts throughout 2022, to share information, best practices, tips and resources to assist those engaged in the COVID-19 food security response. Sessions will include topics such as SNAP Basics, Transportation Equity Programs in Montgomery County, Safe Operation of Emergency Food Distributions, and Nutrition Standards and Education.
Please see below for a detailed description of each upcoming and recorded sessions. While this series is intended to share practical and logistical advice and support for those organizations providing food assistance in Montgomery County during the pandemic and beyond, the sessions are open to anyone interested in learning more about food security resources and best practices in Montgomery County. Registration for every session is not mandatory; please register for as many sessions as you are able to attend.
Please see below for information and recordings from previous sessions
Data Collection and Reporting: A New Tool for Food Assistance Providers–WATCH HERE!
In the fight against hunger, data collection plays a critical role in assessing need, identifying service gaps and deploying resources. This virtual training will provide you with an overview of a new Data Collection Tool recently unveiled by the Food Security Task Force to simplify reporting and make information more accessible. You will learn how to use this Data Collection Tool to assess your own impact and how the County uses collected data to craft policy, develop strategy and assess funding decisions. This virtual training is open to all Food Assistance Providers.
Intersection of Housing and Food Insecurity–WATCH HERE!
Food security and housing security are inextricably linked. With Montgomery County’s high cost of living, individuals often face difficult choices about how to spend limited resources, leaving them susceptible to both food insecurity and housing crises. This virtual training will present an update on pandemic-related housing assistance, connect you with resources for clients facing homelessness, and provide information about how individuals experiencing homelessness can access food through prepared meals programs and federal nutrition benefits. We will also look at the systematic changes and long term support needed to end homelessness in our community. Click here for a housing resource guide.
- Lorraine Driscoll, Public Information Officer, Montgomery County Department of Housing and Community Affairs
- Lynn Rose, Community Engagement Manager, Montgomery County Coalition for the Homeless
- Cynthia Cuestas, Food Security Outreach VISTA, Montgomery County Food Council
- Grayce Wiggins, Housing and Community Development Manager, City of Takoma Park
Fresh Produce 101–WATCH HERE!
Addressing food insecurity effectively means providing people with safe and nutritious food that meets their dietary needs. Fresh produce is an essential part of that equation–providing a valuable source of nutrients to help promote health and prevent chronic disease in a manner that ensures the dignity of those in communities impacted by food insecurity.
Offering fresh produce in a food distribution setting can pose unique challenges. How do you find a consistent source? How do you make sure you are storing and handling it safely? In this training, we will help you understand and access the local supply chain for fresh produce. We will address operational factors such as equipment needs and food safety. And we will discuss how to help clients find longer-term solutions for meeting their fresh produce needs.
- A resilient system, of any kind, requires resilient organizations. And a resilient organization must have well-designed structures, systems, and strategies. This webinar will introduce a design and decision-making framework to help you assess and improve your organization’s resiliency.
- You will explore the following key questions:
- What outcomes are we working to advance/support?
- Where do the resources and assets to do this exist?
- What does it take to mobilize those assets; and what role do we play?
- What does that tell us about our design and strategy?
This webinar is part of Nonprofit Montgomery’s Nonprofit Impact Series. Nonprofit Montgomery, Orgforward and the Montgomery County Food Council are partnering for this webinar, which will highlight challenges unique to food assistance providers. All are welcome, including organizations and individuals who are not currently engaged in food-related work.
Introduction to Food Assistance Resources in Montgomery County–WATCH HERE!
- The COVID-19 pandemic has illuminated the critical need for both short and long term food assistance in our community. This virtual training will provide attendees with an overview of food insecurity in Montgomery County including the County’s COVID-19 response, key findings from a recent Community Food Access Survey, and efforts to sustain a more resilient food system. Attendees will learn how to locate emergency food resources for those experiencing food insecurity, including our foreign-born community members, and will receive information about federal nutrition assistance programs that can help mitigate food insecurity in the longer term.
- Hosted by the Food Council’s Food Security Team
Demystifying Data Collection
- Collecting data is never easy. Limited staff capacity, technology challenges, and privacy concerns are just a few of the many barriers that can stand in the way of collecting data. So how can you make it easier on yourself and your colleagues? Join Nonprofit Montgomery and Sharp Insight for a 90-minute workshop to highlight tips and tricks to help your organization respectfully, accurately, and efficiently get the data you need to share your organization’s impact with the world. Sharp Insight is happy to partner with the Montgomery County Food Council for this workshop, which will highlight challenges unique to food assistance providers. All are welcome, including organizations and individuals who are not currently engaged in food-related work. This training is offered through Nonprofit Montgomery’s Nonprofit Impact Series.
- Hosted by the Montgomery County Food Council, Nonprofit Montgomery, and Sharp Insight
- Data Privacy and Confidentiality Requirements for Food Assistance Providers–WATCH HERE!
- Speaker: Danny Muchoki, Privacy Officer, DHHS
- Data collection is a necessary part of providing food assistance. It is often required by our funding partners and it provides an important planning tool for responding to the needs of our community. This data can include personal information that may be protected by privacy and confidentiality laws. In this virtual training session, you will learn about rules governing privacy and confidentiality and how to comply with these requirements when you collect, store, and process data about the clients you serve.
- Co-hosted by the Montgomery County Food Council and the Montgomery Department of Health and Human Services
- Introduction to Food Assistance Resources in Montgomery County–WATCH HERE!
- Speakers: Susan Kornacki, MPH, Interim Food Security Programs Manager, Montgomery County Food Council and Elizabeth Teuwen, Americorp VISTA, Montgomery County Food Council
- In the year since the COVID-19 pandemic began, the food security landscape in Montgomery County has changed dramatically. This virtual training will provide attendees with an overview of food insecurity in the County, and the County’s COVID-19 food assistance response. We will discuss the network of resources developed by the Montgomery County Food Council and our partners, such as the Online Food Assistance Resource Directory and the County’s Food Assistance Website. We will also review federal nutrition benefits and other resources that can be beneficial in mitigating food insecurity. Recognizing that food insecurity is an interconnected challenge, the Montgomery County Food Council will also share lists of resources and organizations that can support residents who are trying to meet other basic needs, such as housing, utilities, mental health assistance, primary care, and more.
- Attendees will learn how these resources have helped residents gain access to food quickly and efficiently during the pandemic, and how efforts to eradicate food insecurity may evolve in the future.
- Recursos Para Asistencia de Comida en Condado de Montgomery, Introduction to Food Assistance Resources in Montgomery County – Presented in Spanish—Haga clic aquí para ver la sesión grabada
- Esta capacitación virtual proporcionará a los participantes una descripción general de la inseguridad alimentaria en el condado y la respuesta de asistencia alimentaria COVID-19 brindada por el condado. Discutiremos la red de recursos desarrollada por el Consejo de Alimentos y nuestros socios, como el Directorio de recursos de asistencia alimentaria en línea, la herramienta de referencia de asistencia alimentaria y el sitio web de Asistencia alimentaria del condado. También revisaremos los beneficios nutricionales federales y otros recursos que pueden ser beneficiosos para mitigar la inseguridad alimentaria.Esta formación es gratuita y está abierta a todos. Tenga en cuenta que es necesario registrarse con anticipación para recibir el enlace de Zoom.
- Corepresentado de Caridades Catholicos y El Consejo de Comida del Condado de Montgomery
- Creating A Thriving Volunteer Team: Best Practices for Effective Recruitment, Management, and Retention in a Food Assistance Organization–WATCH HERE!
- Speakers: Gretchen Zekiel, Senior Fellow/Program Manager, Montgomery County Volunteer Center, Molly Callaway, Director, Montgomery County Volunteer Center, Marko Oven, Coordinator, UpCounty Consolidation Hub at Black Rock Center for the Arts
- Virtual training to learn best practices for recruiting and managing volunteers in your food assistance organization. You will learn strategies that have worked successfully during COVID-19 and beyond.
- Co-hosted by the Montgomery County Food Council and the Montgomery County Volunteer Center.
- Food Assistance Resources in Montgomery County with the Montgomery County Food Council–WATCH HERE!
- Speakers: Maryland State Delegate Lorig Charkoudian, Heather Bruskin, Executive Director, and Susan Kornacki, Interim Food Security Programs Manager with the Montgomery County Food Council.
- The COVID-19 pandemic has left an indelible impact on the food security landscape in Montgomery County. Tune in to learn more about food insecurity in the County and the County’s COVID-19 food assistance response. Information on the network of resources developed by the Food Council and partners, such as the Online Food Assistance Resource Directory, Food Assistance Referral Tool, and the County’s Food Assistance Website. We will also review federal nutrition benefits and other resources that can be beneficial in mitigating food insecurity. These resources help residents gain access to food quickly and efficiently during the pandemic.
- SNAP 201: How Federal and State Policy Changes Affect SNAP Recipients–WATCH HERE!
- Speaker: JD Robinson, Anti-Hunger Program Associate, Maryland Hunger Solutions
- 2021 has brought momentous changes to the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and the Maryland policies that implement this program. Join us to learn about the current levels of benefits in Maryland, how recent federal legislation will affect eligibility and the amount of assistance available, and recent laws passed by the Maryland General Assembly that will shape anti-hunger efforts in our state. You will gain a better understanding of the “myths” surrounding SNAP and learn how to effectively communicate program changes to your community. This course is intended for those who have already attended Maryland Hunger Solutions SNAP 101 training or have a solid foundation in SNAP basics.
- Hosted by Maryland Hunger Solutions and the Montgomery County Food Council
- Safe Operation Procedures for Emergency Food Distributions–WATCH HERE!
- Led by: Myra Derbyshire, Senior Policy Analyst for the Montgomery County Office of Emergency Management and Homeland Security
- This course is general training for food assistance providers and food security workers to provide awareness of how county sponsored food distribution operations are viewed within the emergency incident management methodology, and how methodology manages resources and promotes safe operations.
- Montgomery County on the Move: An Overview of Transportation Equity Programs in Montgomery County–WATCH HERE!
- Presented in partnership with the Montgomery County Department of Transportation:
- Ruthann Eiser, Transit Marketing Specialist – MCDOT-Commuter Services Montgomery County Department of Transportation
- Denise Isreal, Program Specialist, Transit Programs, MCDOT
- Will Kenlaw, Program Manager, Transit Programs, MCDOT
- Learn about some transportation equity programs supported by the Montgomery County Department of Transportation (MCDOT). The presentation includes information about programs that can support those residents that experience transportation challenges related to physical disabilities, financial barriers, or with few transportation choices in the county. MCDOT will provide an overview of options to help individuals bridge the “first/last mile,” to help them get to and from a destination.
- Presented in partnership with the Montgomery County Department of Transportation:
- September 23rd and 30th: ServSafe Food Handler Training for Food Banking
- Led by Renee Kee, Head of Nutrition Education, Capital Area Food Bank.
- September 24th and October 1st: Food Assistance Resources in Montgomery County (ENGLISH)
- English session led by Susan Kornacki, Food Security Programs Manager, Montgomery County Food Council
- Spanish session led by Diana Tato-Niktash, Food Security Plan Program Manager, Montgomery County Department of Health and Human Services
- October 8th: Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) 101
- English session led by JD Robinson, Anti-Hunger Program Associate, Maryland Hunger Solutions
- Spanish session led by Jenny Torres, Spanish Outreach Coordinator, Maryland Hunger Solutions
- October 22nd: Safe Operation of Emergency Food Distributions
- Led by Mark DeNome, Consultant, Montgomery County Department of Human Services
- November 5th: Nutrition Standards for Food Assistance Providers and Food Education Resources–WATCH HERE!
- Led by: Annmarie Hart-Bookbinder, Project Leader and Nutrition Educator, University of Maryland Extension, Food Supplement Nutrition Education Program; Katherine Donnelly, Nutrition Education Coordinator, Capital Area Food Bank
- November 19th, 11am-12pm: Culturally Competent Community Engagement and Outreach–WATCH HERE!
- Led by: Kaori Hirakawa, Language Access Manager, Office of Community Partnerships, Montgomery County Government.
Please contact Susan Kornacki at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.