As summer kicks into high gear, we know children and families are counting on our Healthy Corners program to deliver nutritious, fresh foods to corner stores in neighborhoods without easy access to grocery stores. To keep up with demand, our Healthy Corners social enterprise is overhauling the in-store refrigeration units we provide our partner corner stores for free, increasing their ability to stock and sell fresh produce.
This investment in local DC businesses and healthier communities is made possible in part by critical support from the DC Department of Health. Our team celebrated this major infrastructure initiative last month with a community block party at one of our partner corner stores, Grubbs SE Pharmacy and Mini Mart, located at the corner of Martin Luther King Jr. Ave and Good Hope Road in Southeast DC. Grubb’s received an enhanced, larger refrigeration unit last summer that allows them to stock a wider variety of healthy foods prepared and delivered by DC Central Kitchen – about 24 different products in all!
Over 30 members of the community joined our event to taste our homemade mango and pineapple salsas, prepared by DCCK culinary graduate and current staff member, Ronald Taylor, Sr.; learn about Healthy Corners product offerings; and, provide feedback to our research partners at American University who are working to understand the impact of providing healthy, affordable food through corner store partnerships.
The event kicked off a summer of awareness-raising and community-building in Wards 7 and 8, where the first round of new refrigeration units will be installed in eight additional corner stores over the course of the summer. Be on the lookout for one of our Healthy Corners ads on a Metro Bus, stop shelter, or Metrorail station East of the river in August!