Helping Students in Need by Serving the Community

A Tarrant County College program is highlighted in the report, Mission Critical: The Role of Community Colleges in Meeting Students’ Basic Needs. It was released by the Center for Community College Student Engagement at The University of Texas at Austin.

In the section of the report titled “How Colleges are Helping Students in Need,” TCC Northwest was highlighted for its partnership with Community Link and the Tarrant Area Foodbank to “offer the Community Food Market on its campus once a month. The farmers’ market-style experience offers fresh foods including meat and produce to all community members at no cost.”

The Community Food Market began in September 2017, after Humanities Division Dean Lisa Benedetti was approached by Community Link Associate Director Lara Gay. “We know that food insecurity is a huge problem with students,” Benedetti said. “Lake Worth ISD, which is one of our sister districts, is on 90 percent food subsidy. Eagle Mountain-Saginaw has more than 7,000 students who are on food subsidies. So we know there’s an incredible need out there, so what better way to serve the community than here?”

“I am heartened that TCC Northwest has leveraged our collaborations and can serve as a nexus to make a difference in the community,” President Zarina Blanenbaker said. “We are a connecting point between our community and the resources they need the most. With the Community Food Market, we are creating an opportunity that is based on compassion and dignity to serve students, staff, and the community.“