51 year old EatSF participant who lives at the Elm, a supportive housing site in the Tenderloin through the Episcopal Community Services (ECS), raves about the EatSF program: “I really appreciated the vouchers, and I hope they continue coming. I really do.”
This participant describes how participating in EatSF changed the way he grocery shops and what he purchases. Before joining the program, he says “I would only eat fruits and vegetables the one time that I go shopping at the beginning of the month.” He goes on to explain how participating in EatSF has enabled him to try new fruits and vegetables. He frequently purchases bananas, green onions, and avocados, though he had never tried avocados or green onions before the program. “I like green onions, but I never bought ‘em till I got these vouchers, you know.”
EatSF’s partnership with Amigo’s Market has created a convenient location for this participant to redeem his vouchers. He explains with fervor how Amigo’s “really gives you a whole bunch for the value, because I mean, like, for bananas, wow, for five dollar of bananas you get a whole bunch!” In addition, Amigos is close by and accepts the vouchers like cash, making it an easy and convenient option for this Elm Residence participant.
Another Elm Resident, 48 years old, praises EatSF — “It’s a blessing to get it…it’s something I didn’t have at first, and it does help me eat better.” He describes how other food assistance programs in the area provide meals that contain a lot of starch, which he has to limit as a diabetic. EatSF vouchers have helped him to better manage his diabetes by adding more fruits and vegetables to his diet. EatSF vouchers may seem meager at $5-$10 a week, but they are providing critical resources for improving the health of people, like this participant, in the Tenderloin Community.