OCA Mocha in partnership with Retriever Essential presents the initiative of “Towards Wholesome Eating.” The goal of this pilot project is to increase the accessibility to adequate nutrition for the food insecure community members in and around UMBC. OCA Mocha will dedicate a refrigeration space for Retriever Essentials to store items like fresh fruits, vegetables, and raw meat. To achieve this, OCA Mocha intends to purchase and set up a refrigerator which would cost $3,000-$4,000.
Along with expanding food choices from non-perishable items (Retriever Essentials’ current offering), Towards Wholesome Eating project will provide more diverse choices of fresh and frozen food to foster and uphold the value of nutritional eating in the campus community. A second objective of Towards Wholesome Eating is to increase community and civic engagement. Student leaders representing both the partners, OCA Mocha and Retriever Essentials, will be trained to transport, store, and distribute food following the food safety guidelines. They will also take the role of “vendors” in farmers-market style events, held on and around campus, offering community members to shop zero-cost food items. Moreover, they will act as community liaisons, advocating for greater food security and connecting the people in need with the food pantry and the refrigeration space.
You Can Make a Difference
UMBC community has been immensely supportive in regularly filling the Retriever Essentials food pantry with non-perishable food items and personal care products. We hope that the fresh and frozen food donation will also emerge from within the community. We, however, aspire to expand our project to a larger scale with walk-in refrigeration in future. To that end, we hope to partner with organizations like the Maryland Food Bank and Hungry Harvest. As of now, in order to kickoff Towards Wholesome Eating, OCA Mocha and Retriever Essentials request you to donate to OCA Mocha Gritstater to raise $4,000 for our first commercial refrigerator to fight food insecurity.
All funds raised are administered by the UMBC Foundation for the benefit of UMBC.