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Rural and Remote Food Banks Gathered in Sacramento for Capacity Building Initiative Launch

May 24, 2018

Like eager students on their first day of school, California Association of Food Banks members from the state’s most far-flung corners caught up excitedly with each other in the Sacramento Marriott conference room.

Napa Valley Food Bank’s Shirley King and Food for People’s Anne Holcomb.

The group was brought together through a generous grant from the New Argosy Foundation to improve the capacity of rural and remote food banks. CAFB’s Rural and Remote Food Bank Capacity Building Initiative focuses on three key recommendations from a previously conducted needs assessment – increasing leadership and board organizational capacity, expanding fundraising efforts, and improving infrastructure and operations to significantly increase the amount of nutritious food distributed in rural communities.

Some food bankers drove more than six hours to participate. Others flew to Sacramento in planes that better passed as tin cans!

The focus of the face-to-face meeting was training conducted by La Piana Consulting. Two principles from the firm, Doug Green and Lester Olmstead-Rose, led participants and their board chairs through exercises that broke down the steps to creating a strategic plan and a successful fundraising program.

Doug Green of La Piana Consulting reviewing the day’s agenda.


The Resource Connection’s David Johnson and Tina Mather.

A breakout discussion on building a shared vision.

“My head is spinning, but I’ve learned so much,” was the shared refrain of the rural and remote cohort at the end of the day.

15 members were selected to participate in CAFB’s Rural and Remote Food Bank Capacity Building Initiative.

The meeting was step one in the program. The food banks will next receive one-on-one coaching from La Piana and report back to CAFB on their progress. To learn more about the Rural and Remote program, click here.


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