Better food, better lives
The residents of our 5-County area in North Carolina are in the middle of a series of chronic disease epidemics that include certain cancers, diseases of the heart, high blood pressure, type II diabetes, high cholesterol, diseases of the kidneys and obesity. Significantly, these chronic diseases can be treated, and their impact reduced by improving food access and changing unhealthy eating habits. Because the rural counties we serve also have somewhat limited access to affordable, healthy, fresh foods, many of our programs focus on creative ways to get fresh, locally-grown food into the homes and diets of the people who live here.
"The causes of the main chronic disease epidemics are... well known. The most important modifiable risk factors are: unhealthy diet and excessive energy intake..." -The World Health Organization
Our prescription produce program is designed to help people learn how to use fresh produce in their diets to manage certain chronic diseases-high blood pressure, type II diabetes, diseases of the kidneys, heart disease, certain cancers and obesity.
"What people eat can be medicine or poison…As a physician, nutrition is one of the most powerful things you can change to reverse the effects of chronic disease."
-Dr. Brenda Rea
Loma Linda University School of Medicine
We partner with local healthcare providers to create a referral program for their patients that can benefit from increasing the amount of fresh vegetables and fruit they consume. Patients from participating medical practices can access:
Weekly supply of fresh, locally grown vegetables and fruit, honey, chicken, and eggs delivered to their medical office via our refrigerated mobile farmers market
Tasting events where they can try healthy dishes
Free recipes for healthy dishes to try at home
Free line dancing, Zumba, Yoga and other physical activity classes
Farm to Classroom
GRRO has created a series of programs and projects that pivot on providing access to sustainably-grown fresh vegetables and fruit.
"We can all agree that in the wealthiest nation on Earth, all children should have the basic nutrition they need to learn and grow and to pursue their dreams, ...nothing is more important than the health and well-being of our children."
Former First Lady of the United States
We partner with childcare, early education and school administrators to make changes to their food purchasing and education practices to help create a supportive culture of wellness in their facilities.
Procurement Program: Works with dietary and food service professionals in pre-school and school nutrition roles to plan the transition replacing canned fruit and vegetables with fresh, locally grown produce.
Food STEM Curriculum: Introduces a grade appropriate science, technology, engineering and math curriculum that revolves around various methods of growing vegetables and fruit, including hydroponics and onsite gardens.