FRESH Pace Healthy Neighborhood Stores Program

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FRESH Pace Healthy Neighborhood Stores Program

With American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funding, the City of St. Petersburg, in partnership with the St. Pete Free Clinic (SPFC) has launched a new program called the FRESH Pace Neighborhood Store Program to help provide healthy food options to families living in areas with limited access.

The FRESH Pace Healthy Neighborhood Store Program is made possible with funds from the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) through the City of St. Petersburg. As of May 2021, $45 million in ARPA State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds has been budgeted to continue the response to the COVID-19 pandemic and to help drive an equitable recovery for residents most impacted by COVID-19. Of the $45 million, $1.179 million has been allocated for Food Security, which includes the FRESH Pace Healthy Neighborhood Store Program, as well as other programs. More about ARPA funding can be found at www.stpete.org/ARPA.

After months of preparation, the first FRESH Pace Healthy Neighborhood Store opened for operation in October 2023 at Rajax Food and Meat Mart, located at 2327 Dr. Martin L. King Jr. St. S. in St. Petersburg.

As part of the City's commitment to systemically address the need for increased access to healthy food options for families throughout St. Pete, the program is designed to incentivize neighborhood corner/convenience stores in USDA-designated low-income, low-access areas to expand their healthy food options at an affordable cost to their customers.

How it works:

  1. SPFC collaborates with local stores to establish infrastructure, marketing plans, and sustainable business models for stocking nutritious food, including fresh fruits and vegetables, low-fat proteins, whole grain items, and low-fat dairy products or dairy alternatives.
  2. SPFC also assists in subsidizing food costs for the stores as they ramp up this programming and helps business owners navigate the process of accepting EBT and WIC if they do not already do so.

The FRESH Pace Healthy Neighborhood Store Program was created to expand access to healthy food citywide. The City of St. Petersburg and St. Pete Free Clinic will work together to serve low-income, low-access areas that contain convenience stores that may not have affordable, nutritious food options readily available.

 Certified FRESH Pace Stores

Visit a certified FRESH Pace store on the dates listed for healthy food, free healthy recipes, giveaways,  health information, and a blood pressure screening provided by SPFC Health Center.

  • Lakeview Market - 1940 22nd Ave. S.
    Saturday, June 29, 2024. 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.
  • Rajax Meat and Food Mart - 2327 Dr. MLK Jr. St. S.
    Saturday, July 27, 2024.  10 a.m. - 2 p.m.
  • Yara Food Mart- 1311 22nd St. S.
    Saturday, August 24, 2024. 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.
  • Wildwood Meat Market - 1228 28 St. S.
    Saturday, September 28, 2024.  10 a.m. - 2 p.m.