CISA's COVID-19 response
The spread of COVID-19 has brought a lot of fear and uncertainty to our communities. We've been hearing from farmers and other local business owners about how the coronavirus epidemic is interrupting sales, bringing worry about how that will affect their businesses, and causing concern about how to keep customers and employees healthy and supported. CISA's staff has been working on identifying how we can support local farms, restaurants, retailers, and others in weathering the necessary interruptions that the response to COVID-19 is bringing, and talking with state officials and partner organizations about how we can work together.

This is a crisis that requires us to consider the needs of our neighbors and our communities as a whole. Social distancing, the cancellation of public events, and institutions and workplaces going remote are acts of community solidarity that protect the most vulnerable members of society, many of whom are not able to take self-protective measures themselves. In that spirit, and if you are able, consider how you can approach this crisis with a spirit of generosity and community benefit.
How can you help?

Choose local.
If you're running errands and buying groceries and goods, prioritize supporting local farms and businesses more than ever. They need your support.
Pay now. 
Cash flow is an issue for local businesses when sales are interrupted. Are you in a position to help? If you're thinking of signing up for a summer farm share, now is the time. Consider buying gift cards at restaurants, farm stands, and other local businesses to provide them with needed income now, and use them when things have normalized.

Tip service workers generously.
People who rely on tips and who can't work remotely are going to suffer. If you can, tip extra.

The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts, the Survival Centers, and other agencies that serve hungry people need support now too. If you are able, donate and volunteer your time.
Farmers and other business owners:

Get in touch
We want to hear from you! How is this affecting you, your employees, your sales? What sort of support do you need? Are you making changes to your business that we can help promote? Please get in touch with Devon, Zoey, or Stevie, or call the office at 413-665-7100. Staff is working remotely but will receive phone messages.

We are compiling COVID-19 resources for farmers, markets, and local businesses. Find them here.

Local Hero enrollment deadline pushed to April 30
We know many of you have much more pressing concerns than Local Hero enrollment right now, so we are extending the deadline to enroll until April 30th. You can find enrollment information here
CISA office closed, meetings and workshops cancelled

CISA's office is closed to the public and staff will be working remotely beginning 3/16/20. Staff are available by email and will be checking voicemail remotely. Find staff contact info here.

The CISA Annual Meeting, originally scheduled for April 16th, has been postponed and the new date has yet to be determined. All upcoming CISA workshops, meet and greets, and networking events have been cancelled or postponed. Check here for updates.

Quick Links

Check out our press page for news stories about local farms and local agriculture, along with our weekly interview series on WRSI, monthly column in the Daily Hampshire Gazette, and more!
Go to press page

Job opportunities, land, equipment.
Go to classifieds
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Community Involved in Sustaining Agriculture is an equal opportunity provider and employer. 
CISA, 1 Sugarloaf Street, South Deerfield, MA 01373