Formed in May, the Bastrop County Cares Nourish Coalition seeks to cultivate a healthier, more sustainable food system in Bastrop County. The coalition aims to help connect existing food infrastructure within the county.

The coalition focuses on local food infrastructure and food security along with food Rx (food as medicine), food waste and recovery, food equity, and food system resilience.

The approach

The coalition plans to focus on listening to the needs of the local community. Community member volunteers can also help the coalition aid micro-communities.

“[The focus is] really us asking those questions and just listening to the answers we receive from the community that drives us forward,” Nourish change agent Krissy Voutas said.

According to the City of Austin Office of Sustainability report, the area would only have a three-day supply of food in the case of a major catastrophe in Central Texas.

“We really would love to have more people gardening and understanding how to be a little more self-sufficient,” May said.

One of the coalition’s priorities is to encourage people to eat more healthy and local food.

“Bastrop County has pretty high levels of obesity and diabetes, and encouraging people to eat more fruits and vegetables—as basic as it seems—is one of our goals,” May said.

Also of note

The coalition also helps ensure that members of the community who are eligible for federal and state benefits are enrolled.

“Surprisingly enough, there's a pretty good percentage of people who are eligible but not enrolled for whatever reason,” May said.

Lend a hand

Those interested in being involved can join the coalition to volunteer their time. Share specific skills and expertise by filling out a coalition survey. In the survey, individuals can also mention projects on which they would like to see the coalition focus.

Other resources, such as health recipe ideas and a list of community events, can be found in the Nourish Coalition’s newsletter.