Vermonters Work Together to Fight Food Insecurity

May 05, 2020
A heart shape is drawn in flour on a table
In Vermont, neighbors help neighbors. As the state responds to the COVID-19 pandemic by asking Vermonters to stay home as much as possible, food insecurity is a community concern, and people are taking stock and finding ways they can help feed their neighbors. 

Vermont’s newly formed Frontline Foods chapter, organized by Burlington nurse Sheramy Tsai, is one such initiative.  Tsai told VTDigger the initiative helps two frontline workers – food service employees and health care workers. 

Vermont’s chapter has raised over $35,000, and donated hundreds of meals. 

Other individual Vermonters are stepping up, too, like Williston’s Mary Jane Dieter, who usually works as a facilitator for better workplace communication. 

She found herself with time on her hands during the COVID-19 crisis, and began baking bread at home from scratch and offering it to those having trouble making it to the grocery store, she told Seven Days. 

Dieter, a.k.a. “The Bread Fairy,” and her husband created a website connecting people with bread recipes and a way to start a “bread fairy” initiative in their own community. 

Irasburg pastry chef Thomas McCurdy, who owns Ardelia Farm & Co. with his husband, is a recent winner of the Food Network’s “Chopped Sweets.” Since the onset of the COVID-19 crisis, he’s launched Kingdom Direct Food Delivery, which offers safe food delivery, according to Seven Days. 

Kingdom Direct sells baked goods, pantry staples like flour, goods from local farms and prepared meals.  

These stories show true community spirit – like fine artisanal bread, Vermonters rise together. 


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