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New England News

Vermont Foodbank Holds Annual Conference

The Vermont Foodbank held its annual conference to discuss hunger in Vermont.   This year’s focus was how to explore positive ways to address the complexities of hunger.

The Vermont Foodbank Hunger Action Conference brought more than 400 food shelf and meal site managers, philanthropists, state officials, service providers, state employees and other advocates from across the state to Burlington. Its theme: “Moving to Action, Achieving Results”.
Vermont Foodbank CEO John Sayles says they are getting results every day by feeding as many as 86-thousand Vermonters, but that also means they are not getting results because those people need to be fed.

To help do that Sayles and conference organizers brought in two Champlain College professors and business consultants to discuss how to formulate positive questions in order to get to more positive results.  Dr. Matthew Moehle’s strategy is using strength-based approaches to create positive change.

By redirecting how questions are asked and fostering new ideas, Moehle says new solutions can be found.

Speakers included Doug Davis, Director of Food Services at the Burlington School Food Project.  His program was highlighted as a “Lesson from a Shining Example” of programs that are trying new approaches, and working.

The Vermont Foodbank plans three followup conference calls to reinforce the meeting's themes and lessons.