Coronavirus/ COVID-19 Updates

During these difficult times, our top priority remains the health and well being of our community. We are committed to doing our part to slowing the transmission of the coronavirus, and will be complying with all local, state and federal recommendations. Our program updates are as follows:

Youth Crews: After much deliberation, we have sadly decided to cancel our Youth Crew program for the rest of 2020 and focus entirely on our food access work. A Roots Rising Crew is an intimate experience- we travel together in our van, we work side by side, we cook and eat together, we turn to each other in Real Talk circles. The necessity of social distancing would take away much of what is magical about our Crews, and would make other aspects impossible. This especially applies to providing transport and food, which are the two elements that we include to level the playing field and make these jobs accessible for all. And so for the safety of all, we will need to pause this program. That said, our Crews remain at the heart of Roots Rising, and we will be thinking creatively to keep youth voices integrated into our organization. We will soon be introducing a fantastic college intern who will be spearheading the work to keep youth engaged in Roots Rising while we need to remain physically distant. Our Crews WILL come back, and we look forward to the day when we can be back out in the farm fields again, singing worksongs and being together under the sun.  

Pittsfield Farmers Market: The City of Pittsfield is no longer granting special event permits for May and June and is strongly recommending that all events that already have permits be cancelled or postponed through July 1st. As such, we will be delaying the launch of our outdoor farmers market season until July 11th, at the earliest. We will update this page when we have a confirmed launch date.

In addition, we have launched a Virtual Farmers Market

 

Our market's closure has a huge economic effect on our farmers. It’s also a strike against food security for our low-income neighbors, many of whom rely on our Market Match to make fresh and healthy food affordable. In addition, many elderly or otherwise high-risk individuals are unable or afraid to leave their homes to get food.

So with generous emergency funding and support from Berkshire United WayBerkshire Taconic Community FoundationBerkshire Agricultural Ventures, and Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Foundation, we have launched a Virtual Farmers Market. You can now order food online from a variety of farmers and food producers and have it delivered right to your door- county-wide!

 

We offer a $30 weekly discount to 50 shoppers a week who receive SNAP benefits or who are suffering from economic hardship due to the pandemic. We also offer free delivery to seniors, those at high risk for the virus, SNAP recipients, and those suffering from economic hardship.

For any questions, please contact our Program Coordinator at grace@rootsrising.org. We are grateful for the support of our community and we look forward to brighter days ahead!