January 9, 2015

Austin Organizations Bolstered By Grants From Local Institution

Austin farming initiatives are among several groups to benefit from a local grant. The Austin culinary arts scene experienced a hugely positive impact recently as a local organization has announced the awarding of monetary grants to a number of local initiatives. As the Austin Chronicle reports, the Austin Food and Wine Alliance will be splitting a sizeable donation between five local institutions. All of the recipients are dedicated to building community in the area through the encouragement of sustainable, effective and affordable agricultural and culinary practices. The benefits of these donations could be felt as soon as early 2015, and with a diverse range of recipients, there’s certainly cause for excitement.

The grant
The Austin Food and Wine Alliance is dedicated to bettering the state of culinary affairs throughout the city by encouraging the growth of local businesses and initiatives that are moving food culture forward. This winter, the organization is ending its fiscal year by splitting a grant totaling $30,000 among five different upstarts. Cathy Cochran Lewis, the former president and current grant chair of the Austin Food and Wine Alliance, indicated the group’s excitement at being able to help several of the city’s food-inclined organizations thrive in the coming year in a press release.

“We are thrilled to support so many outstanding projects that truly are making an astounding impact on our community. We are so fortunate to have the ingenuity, talent and commitment of these individuals and organizations focused on the advancement of food, wine and spirits in our community,” the release read.

Farming leads the pack
The majority of the allotted $30,000 will be delivered to organizations that focus on creating more sustainable agricultural practices  for the local community. Chief among these is The New Farm Institute at Green Gate Farms, which CultureMap Austin reports will receive $10,000 for its cause. The New Farm Institute holds classes, camps and other programs to educate locals about how to incorporate more sustainable habits and practices into their daily lives. Similarly, the Springdale Center for Urban Agriculture will be claiming $7,500 to better its mission of bolstering heritage agriculture by facilitating communication and collaboration between local farmers and chefs. Another $5,000 will be given to the Fresh Chefs Society, which enables foster children to receive culinary instruction from local chefs.

Producers and growers
While farming initiatives were certainly the most benefited by the AFWS’ grants, other organizations also came away with additional funding for the coming year. Anjore, a group that supports local food producers by putting on regular farmers markets and a supper club, earned a $2,500 stipend. The Growers Alliance of Central Texas was given a grant totaling $5,000. The  Alliance aims to better the personal health of local sustainable farmers by creating a medical fund which they can use.