Naig joins local food summit

Monday, April 9, 2018
Mike Naig

Buena Vista University is set to host a one-day food insecurity summit that will feature appearances by Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig and Michelle Book, president and CEO of the Food Bank of Iowa. The summit begins at 8 a.m. on Tuesday, April 10, and will be held in Hansen 8 in the Harold Walter Siebens School of Business/Siebens Forum on the BVU campus.

The summit, which is entitled, “Finding Your Spark: Battling Food Insecurity in Rural Iowa,” will focus on the volunteer efforts in northwest Iowa that are making a difference to end food insecurity. It is being coordinated through a partnership between BVU’s Office of Civic Engagement, Iowa State University and Extension and Outreach of Buena Vista County, and SALUD! Multicultural Health Coalition of Storm Lake.

Individuals and agencies from across the state are invited to attend the event to network, share ideas, and learn about local initiatives that are fighting to end hunger.

“Food insecurity is such an important topic because millions of people are in these situations from all over the world,” said Sarah Callihan, AmeriCorps civic engagement coordinator at BVU. “I am excited about this conference because it is bringing together so many organizations in the area that are working to combat food insecurity in the Storm Lake community. Not only can students and the community learn what different organizations do in the area, but they can also learn how to get involved.”

The conference will kick off with a photo documentary that was created by BVU students and focuses on food insecurity in a diverse community. There will be several general sessions throughout the day featuring expert speakers, including Naig. The event’s keynote will be presented by Book, whose goals include improving the quantity, efficiency, and nutrition of the Food Bank’s distributions.

The sessions will include:

• Little Free Pantries/Libraries

• Community Gardens

• Food Pantries of Iowa

• Who is ALICE?

• Age Gap: Accommodations for All Ages

• Empowerment: Sparking Volunteers

The event is open to the public. Those interested in attending can register online at Participants can also register on April 10 beginning at 8 a.m. outside of Hansen 8. Lunch will be provided for all attendees.

For more information or for questions, please contact Callihan at or 712.749.2084.