How you can support the mercado
There are many ways you can support the mercado’s success in our community:
Provide funds for Double Dollars Matching Program: One way to support the Port Towns Farmers Mercado and assure its success is to make it more food-stamp-friendly! Help us increase the amount of fruits and vegetables customers can buy with SNAP or MD WIC dollars by growing the pool of Maryland Market Money. Help ECO City Farms to offer Maryland Market Money at the mercado!
ECO is seeking funding for a double dollar program, called Maryland Market Money, which matches SNAP/EBT, MD WIC and Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program benefits and other payment options spent at the mercado on fresh fruits and vegetables with vouchers for additional fresh food purchases of up to $5 each visit. We want all members of the Port Towns community–town governments, businesses, non-profits, faith and civic groups and individuals–to contribute to this program.
For groups and individuals concerned with hunger issues, contributing to the Double Dollars program is a great way to meet hunger needs directly in our area, with guaranteed impact on both residents, local farmers and food producers. It doubles money in pockets of low income customers as well as the farmers at the mercado and improves community health.
Promote and spread the word: The success of the mercado depends on attracting shoppers to regularly and enthusiastically shop there. Our vendors will not remain at the mercado unless they sell their products. You can help by promoting the mercado to residents, via town newsletters, email listservs, and through other community networks. We can provide logos, written materials, and any information about the mercado you may require to help you encourage residents to shop at the mercado every week.
Make a pledge to shop at mercado weekly yourself: A regular purchase at the mercado each week will keep it successful, especially during its first years while it establishes a customer base. Help make it work by inviting your family and friends to shop with you there weekly.
Community tables: Organizations, programs and initiatives that match the mercado’s community-based, green and health-promoting purposes are invited to set up an information table at the mercado. Contact us to sign up for one or more days during the season.
Share your ideas: If you have suggestions about how to promote the mercado and make it a success, please let us know. We welcome ideas, volunteers and support in many forms to make this mercado a multicultural and dynamic community resource.
Volunteer: We are looking for people of all ages and descriptions who want to help with set-up, sales and cleanup weekly and/or to serve on the market’s steering committee.
Questions, ideas, or want to volunteer?
Contact Amanda West at ECO City Farms: firstname.lastname@example.org or 304 703 2380