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NV Anti-Poverty Program Gets a Boost from Whole Foods

Jessica Price, a participant in the "Getting Ahead" program, at her community college graduation, with her daughter Kiera. (Jessica Price)
Jessica Price, a participant in the "Getting Ahead" program, at her community college graduation, with her daughter Kiera. (Jessica Price)
January 9, 2018

RENO, Nev. – An anti-poverty program called "Getting Ahead" is getting a boost from the Whole Foods store in Reno. The store is donating five percent of its sales this Thursday the 11th to the program, which is a part of the Food Bank of Northern Nevada.

The Getting Ahead program is a 16-week course that educates people on how to break free from poverty. It began in 2008 and has helped 350 people get back on their feet, so far.

Jessica Price, a 26-year-old single mom who is in school to become a nurse, says the program is helping her tremendously.

"It teaches you how to recognize your situation and identify why you're in that situation," she explains. "And then, it teaches you the tools and connects you to the resources you need in the community to cross over that barrier, and make improvements in your life that can take you out of poverty."

The program currently operates at Truckee Meadows Community College and at the Reno Housing Authority and runs several groups in partnership with the Reno Rotary Club. The Food Bank would like to expand to more locations.

Price says the people who participate come from many backgrounds. Some grew up in poverty, others fell behind after a divorce or a job loss. She says members of each class end up learning a lot from each other.

"Coming together and sharing their stories and sharing what resources have helped them - we're all connecting and allowing each of us to gain access to resources we may not have known about in our community," she says.

The Food Bank of Northern Nevada serves 95,000 people each month and delivered more than 14 million meals last year.

Suzanne Potter, Public News Service - NV