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Columbia’s Grocery Access Pilot Program Recognized in White House Challenge

Innovative Grocery Access Program

Columbia’s Grocery Access Pilot Program Recognized in White House Challenge

In a recent announcement, the White House has brought Columbia, SC, into the limelight through its White House Challenge to End Hunger and Build Healthy Communities. The city’s innovative Grocery Access Pilot (GAP) program is set to spearhead this challenge.

The GAP program, a partnership initiative between Columbia and Instacart, works towards tackling food insecurity. It offers qualified residents a free monthly Instacart membership and covers service fees. The program particularly focuses on individuals residing in food deserts, areas characterized by limited access to fresh and nutritious food options due to their distance from grocery stores, a definition established by the USDA.

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Columbia Leading the Way in Addressing Food Insecurity

Columbia Mayor Daniel Rickenmann conveyed his enthusiasm for the continuation of the GAP program and its role in the White House Challenge. “Being part of the Challenge enables us to showcase our unwavering commitment to mitigate food insecurity and nurture a healthier community,” stated Rickenmann. “We aspire for Columbia to be an emblem of innovation and motivation for other cities grappling with similar issues.”

The city’s Food Policy Committee outlined the urgent need for fundamental food access in Richland County in a 2020 report, identifying over 65,000 residents living with food insecurity. With the GAP program now leading the nation’s struggle against hunger through the White House Challenge, Columbia is expected to make significant progress in addressing food access disparities, consequently improving the well-being of its population.

A Call to Action for Other Communities

With Columbia’s impactful initiatives, the city paves the way for transformative change in communities across the nation. The city’s leadership and innovative actions serve as a beacon for others struggling with food insecurity, encouraging them to explore new ways of addressing this pressing issue.


Columbia's Grocery Access Pilot Program Recognized in White House Challenge

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