This grant program is developed as a part of Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation’s initiative to ensure all people in Columbia County, especially households with limited resources, have access to fresh and healthy food. This includes providing immediate access to healthy food for the food insecure while simultaneously transforming the food system to increase long-term access for everyone in Columbia County.  

This initiative aims to address three areas of impact: 

  • People in Columbia County have the knowledge, tools and capital necessary to want and demand healthy food 
  • An adequate supply of healthy food is available for people in Columbia County, particularly especially households with limited resources, at a reasonable price point 
  • Community members, organizations and businesses within targeted communities are communicating and developing co-created food solutions


Columbia County food pantries and food distribution sites; farmers markets; schools; nonprofit organizations; and fiscally sponsored organizations


For the purpose of this initiative, key terms are defined as follows: 

  • Fresh and healthy food: Fresh fruits, vegetables, grains, legumes, milk, cheese, poultry, eggs, meat and fish that travel as few food miles as possible from producer or retailer to consumer; along with healthy essential staples and shelf-stable food items. 
  • Food insecure: Lacking reliable access to a sufficient quantity of affordable, nutritious food
  • Limited resources: Those households who live below 200% of the poverty income level, which for a family of four in the U.S. in 2021 is about $53,000 per year. 

Project proposals that align activities, when appropriate and feasible, with Roller Grocer 19 and/or the Sylvia Center are encouraged. This is not a requirement, however, as this grant program encourages applicants from a wide range of organizations with ideas and passion for how to increase access to fresh and healthy food in Columbia County.

Examples of eligible projects could include market match/double up programs at farmers markets; healthy “corner store” type initiatives; needs at food pantries; gleaning programs; subsidized CSA shares; and other innovative ideas focused on increasing access to fresh and healthy food among Columbia County residents with limited resources.

Technical assistance and consulting support is available to grantees through the New York Council of Nonprofits, if helpful to the organization achieving project goals and/or addressing underlying organizational challenges.


Grants will range up to $5,000. A total of $40,000 is available for this grant program. All applicants will be notified of grant allocations within six weeks of the deadline date.


Your organization must: 

  • Be incorporated as a nonprofit organization with 501(c)(3) status, be a public agency (e.g. church or school district eligible to receive tax-exempt funds), or operate under fiscal sponsorship of a 501(c)(3) organization 
  • Be based in and serve residents of Columbia County (fiscal sponsors may be located outside of the county) 

The foundation does not support organizations which in their constitution, by-laws, or practice, discriminate against a person or group on the basis of age, race, national origin, ethnicity, gender, disability, sexual orientation, political affiliation or religious belief. A pantry or food distribution site that is located at a church is eligible for consideration as long as services are open to any and all individuals regardless of religious beliefs.



Interest Area

Health & Human Services

Grant Amount

Up to $5,000



How To Apply

Click the apply button below to visit our application portal.