Coalition Building

Building Community Coalitions

We help launch and sustain community coalitions to work on priorities identified through community planning processes. Scroll down to see examples of the work we’ve done and continue to do.

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Hampshire County Food Policy Council

Creating a Platform

One of the top priorities identified by the Healthy Hampshire Food Access Assessment and the Amherst Food Justice Report and Action Plan was to create a platform where community members and organizational staff could collaborate and share power to identify and implement food systems changes that would benefit Hampshire county’s most marginalized residents. In 2020, a group called the Governance Circle formed to research and experiment with models for collaboration focused on power sharing. After several years of work together, they launched Hampshire County Food Policy Council (HCFPC) in 2022.

Governance Model: Sociocracy

The HCFPC uses a governance model called sociocracy, which relies on collaborative, consent-based decision making through a network of linked circles. The HCFPC is made up of 50 community members and organizational staff who work across 15 distinct circles focused on different areas of food system change. Collectively, the circles work to realize the HCFPC’s vision of a resilient, community-owned regional food system where all people are empowered to live more joyful and gratifying lives through access to affordable, healthy, locally grown food of their choice. The HCFPC does this through its mission of cultivating shared governance and a county-wide network that builds the power of community voice to make food policies more equitable, honor diverse cultures, and help local food economies flourish.

What We Do

In its first few years, the HCFPC has launched and supported school and community gardens across the county, trained dozens of people on food system organizing, advocated for state food and health policies, developed a monthly newsletter, established the Hampshire County Community Food Story Archive, hosted events, and much more.

The HCFPC welcomes all people who share our vision. Learn more, and get involved!

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