INDIANAPOLIS – The fourth year of the Food in Transit program was celebrated today by Mayor Joe Hogsett, City-County Council President Vop Osili, IndyGo President & CEO Inez Evans, and Growing Places Indy Executive Director Victoria Beaty at the Julia M. Carson Transit Center.
Designed to meet IndyGo riders where they are, Food in Transit is a collaboration between Growing Places Indy and IndyGo to help combat food insecurity in Indianapolis.
“No matter your age, zip code, or job title, access to healthy food should not be a luxury,” said Mayor Joe Hogsett. “This initiative provides convenient, affordable, and nutritious groceries at a facility that already serves hundreds of Indy residents each day, exemplifying the type of innovative solutions to food issues our city needs.”
Food in Transit is available every Wednesday through September 1, 2021, from 2- 5 p.m. at the Julia M. Carson Transit Center, 201 E. Washington Street. The farm stand, sourced with produce from Growing Places Indy, provides a wide variety of fresh, local vegetables each week, with affordably priced bundles of five or 10 dollars. The vegetables will be pre-bundled and wrapped for safety and convenience. Cash, SNAP, EBT, credit, and debit are all accepted forms of payment, and Growing Places Indy offers a 50% discount up to a max of $10 off for SNAP recipients.
“Growing Places Indy is beyond thrilled to be a part of this project for the fourth year in a row,” said Victoria Beaty, executive director of Growing Places Indy. “After the past year and the additional toll the pandemic has taken on access to fresh food, it is increasingly important to provide our local community with fresh produce. The Food in Transit program makes shopping local both convenient and affordable.”
Every year, the City of Indianapolis’ Department of Metropolitan Development releases recipients of federal funding for signature projects. In 2019, the City awarded $400,000 in Community Development Block Grant funds for Cleo’s Bodega, a grocery store and cafe on the Near Northwest side of Indianapolis. This year, DMD granted $18.7 million to 53 projects across Marion County.
“As the pandemic highlighted disparities in our city, DMD’s Community Investments team continues to progress and find collaborative uses for funding to advance equity and enhance the quality of life for residents,” said Scarlett Martin, director of the Department of Metropolitan Development.
Combating food insecurity remains a high priority of the Hogsett Administration. According to a 2020 Indy Hunger Network study, more than 25% of Marion County residents struggle to put meals on their tables. Seven percent of households miss meals in any given week, and 60% of those are missing five meals or more weekly.
With the Growing Places Indy’s farm stand conveniently located downtown, the Food in Transit program hopes to reduce the transportation burdens of an added shopping trip.
“IndyGo is excited to serve as the access point for this weekly fresh produce farmstand,” said Inez Evans, IndyGo president & CEO. “Our mission extends beyond providing safe, reliable and accessible mobility experiences to also connecting the community to economic opportunities that can enhance their lives in a variety of ways.”