Beth Boehm is joining the Connecticut Foodshare Network and Programs team as a Network Resources Representative, serving partners in Eastern Connecticut. She is not new to the food bank, having joined Foodshare at the beginning of 2021 as an AmeriCorps VISTA (Volunteers in Service to America) community empowerment worker.

Beth’s work through AmeriCorps was primarily devoted to supporting the transition to community-based leadership among the Foodshare Hunger Action Teams (HATs) in Hartford and Tolland counties. These groups were organized by Foodshare to encourage community-driven responses to hunger. “With my support, several of the teams have transitioned into vibrant, engaged, independent organizations,” Beth said. She also helped to plan the 2021 Hunger Action Team Symposium and launch an educational webinar series that was originally intended to serve the HATs but was also available to network partners. Most recently, training in de-escalation tactics was offered in January. A recording of the program is available here.

Beth says another highlight during her VISTA term was to create and facilitate a training program for the Connecticut Foodshare Mobile Pantry program. “This program focused on creating a welcoming environment, treating guests with dignity and respect, and offering choice when possible. I was able to share training program with 65 Mobile pantry sites and 461 volunteers in Harford and Tolland County in fall 2021.”