The Nutrition Center recognizes that a complex web of social, economic, and environmental factors determines a person’s long-term health and wellbeing. The NC aims to create multiple opportunities for engagement that have greater impact when woven together. A child from the downtown elementary school may be involved in the NC-led school garden or after-school cooking club. His older sibling could apply for her first job with the NC Summer Youth Gardener program while their parents can sign up for a garden plot on their street or attend free cooking education classes down the block.
These programs and services are matched with the NC’s strategic investment in collaborations, as well as community-based assessment and planning activities. More than ever, the NC plays a convening role and provides some consistent backbone support to leverage capacity, talent, resources and leadership towards broader community goals in Lewiston and Auburn.
The Nutrition Center has been integral to the implementation of a multi-partner community food assessment and planning process – the first assessment of this nature and scope to be conducted in the State of Maine that has led to the creation of the regional food council, Good Food Council of Lewiston-Auburn (GFCLA). GFCLA reflects a growing national trend of using community food assessments as the basis for designing big-picture, long-term community food and nutrition solutions that combine programmatic and policy approaches.
Get Involved! The St. Mary’s Nutrition Center offers regular events and classes including cooking centered nutrition programs, gardener workshops as well as meaningful learning, service and work experiences for youth and university students. The long-term impact and work of the center depends on the support of dedicated volunteers of all ages. Please fill out this Volunteer Application or contact us at 207-513-3848 or email us NutritionCenter@stmarysmaine.com if you would like to work or volunteer with us or participate in one of our programs.