This year’s goal is $116,850 for 26 organizations that have requested basic needs funding for quality of life, community aid, children’s programs, and those who are beyond Sewanee but still serve the entire community. This week we shine the spotlight on the South Cumberland Farmers’ Market (SCFM).
The South Cumberland Farmers’ Market is an organization of farmers and agricultural producers who work together to facilitate and expand the sales of local products; provide education and support to farmers and consumers; and lay the groundwork for a just, equitable and sustainable local food economy. The vision of the SCFM is to create a vibrant local food economy that provides prosperity to farmers and rural communities and increases access to fresh, healthy, local food for everyone. More than 60 farm/producer families are registered growers who benefit economically by selling through the SCFM.
The SCFM serves an average of 50 customer families a week who have access to reasonably priced, fresh locally grown food by purchasing through the market. It’s not uncommon for small farmers and producers who get their start at the market to expand their business to wholesale customers. The Bread Peddler, whose baked goods are now available at the Piggly Wiggly and elsewhere, and Brown’s Hollar Creations, which is now the primary source for eggs purchased by University Food Services, are two examples.
The SCFM is requesting $1,000 to aid in increasing the market manager’s salary to a level comparable to minimum wage. The market manager is the only paid employee. Volunteers contribute nearly 100 hours a month to facilitate the operation of the market. In 2016, the market manager typically worked 15-20 hours a week with average earnings of less than $3.50 per hour. Since 1908, the goal of the SCC has been to help citizens by funding the community. Through SCC funding, local organizations can help those caught in the cycle of poverty, improve quality of life through outreach and community initiatives, and provide support for children with a variety of programs.
The SCC is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, and donations are tax-deductible. Send your donation to Sewanee Community Chest, P.O. Box 99, Sewanee, TN 37375.