Community Market Grants and Capacity Seed Funding

Before the pandemic, the Food Bank committed to working actively with partners to create better food programming for our community. During the pandemic need for food programming doubled in scale and has not receded. We now need to reimagine food programming in our community. This is about rebuilding, not expanding service. It is about serving people differently. It is about us supporting our partners in rebuilding and reimagining service. We did extensive active listening last year and sought active counsel from our partners and community and are now pursuing two new ventures.

San Francisco-Marin Food Bank is piloting new programs that aims to strengthen partnerships as well as increase both the quantity and quality of programming available to participants. These grant programs will work in partnership with organizations that are looking to amplify the food programming that they can offer. Partner organizations have the choice of which grant they would like to apply for. 
Partners should only apply for one of the grant options below, please select whichever is most applicable to you.

Capacity Seed Funding
Capacity Seed Funding is an opportunity to help current pantry and/or shop partners accelerate their existing efforts and increase the number of individuals they are able to serve through a one-time grant. The Food Bank will provide a set formula for the award amount, based on the number of additional units of service (UOS) that partner wishes to add to their current pantry. Those additional UOS will be filled with Food Bank participant referrals from existing Food Bank programming for regular weekly distributions at said pantry. The Food Bank will support the partner’s wisdom and intentions on how to best use this one-time award to achieve the increased UOS, as each partner knows what could uniquely best jumpstart the growth that they will then maintain year over year at their site. 
The minimum UOS increase that a partner can propose is 50, and the maximum is 500. Minimum award is $3,120 (which is equivalent to 50 UOS), maximum is $31,200 (equivalent to 500 UOS), which is determined by a pre-identified per-UOS formula. The actual amount of UOS awarded will be determined in partnership with the Food Bank at the time of award, based on the current units of service being provided by the partner and the Food Bank’s delivery capacity. The Food Bank will provide the food necessary for these increased units of service, and the partner will be responsible for the logistics and operations of the distribution, just as pantries currently operate.
Community Markets

Community Markets are large-scale, multi-day pantries that are equity centered and community led. They feel similar to a grocery store with a set semi-permanent location and community participants are able to browse, touch, and choose products.​

Community Markets provide a variety of benefits including:​

  • Increasing dignity for participants through its familiar design.​
  • More equitable reach to participants experiencing food insecurity through increased frequency and flexibility.​
  • Opportunity to connect to connect participants to additional services they may need that the partner provides on-site.
Partners would apply for a Community Markets Planning Grant in order to receive structured support and resources to develop the plan to launch a market. The Food Bank will provide a cohort environment, weekly planning meetings, and hands-on 1 on 1 support.
  • Planning Grant - 8 Weeks / $5,000. End result is a Community Market Implementation Plan.

This form will only take 5-10 minutes.