; Community collaboration to build nonprofit food policy council | Conferences | AgRisk Library


Conference Name Community collaboration to build nonprofit food policy council

Cole Ehmke


Wyoming did not have a statewide food policy council – a group of representatives and stakeholders from many sectors of the food system – in 2018. To enable the development of one, University of Wyoming Extension became the host for a series of AmeriCorps VISTA volunteers. Over the course of three years (2019 to 2021) three AmeriCorps VISTA members provided support to a board of directors and numerous working groups associated with the Wyoming Food Coalition. This poster contains a summary of the VISTA program and provides lessons learned both in the use of the VISTA program and of helping a nonprofit entity to form.

The VISTA members were used to conduct a needs assessment, facilitate strategic planning, and support equitable access to food across the state – aims which would involve and support ag producers, especially regarding marketing and production risks. The effort was successful in creating an independent entity and building the capacity of the group to accomplish its aims.