Michigan Association of Health Plans

Lakeshore Food Club receives $2,500 grant to tackle health care disparities, food insecurity in Mason County

Lakeshore Food Club received a $2,500 grant from the Michigan Association of Health Plans (MAHP) during the annual Empty Bowls fundraiser.

This funding is being made available as part of the MAHP’s Tackling Health Care Disparities in Michigan grant, which encourages community-based organizations to collaborate and deploy local initiatives aimed at creating better health outcomes and improving health equity.

Lakeshore Food Club plays an important role in this effort by providing its 2,000+ membership with access to fresh, healthy food from local farms.

“Food access is a critical determinant of health,” said O’Nealya Gronstal, executive director of Lakeshore Food Club. “Since the COVID-19 pandemic, demand for membership has grown to an unprecedented 2,000 local households. This grant directly supports our mission of providing fresh food access and allows our organization to purchase 10 days’ worth of fresh produce from local farmers.”

According to 2021 data from Feeding America, nearly 4,000 residents and almost 900 children in Mason County are food insecure. Lakeshore Food Club is open six days a week, and more than 2,000 transactions go through their cash registers every month.

“MAHP recognizes the important role local community-based organizations play in improving the health outcomes of Michigan citizens,” said Dominick Pallone, executive director of the Michigan Association of Health Plans. “Organizations like the Lakeshore Food Club are instrumental in addressing health equity and providing their community with healthy and local foods, addressing food insecurity in the county.”

“Lakeshore Food Club is known in our community as a key resource in helping families put food on the table, ”said State Representative Curt VanderWall (R-Ludington). “I’m thrilled that they have this extra support from the Michigan Association of Health Plans to continue to fulfill their mission of expanding food access.”

Those interested in supporting Lakeshore Food Club can visit their website to learn more about how to donate items or volunteer.

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