Uplift has many facets. However, our Business Development Manager, Lauren Vague Stager has a simple description of who we are, what we do and the important reason to why we do it.
Uplift is a national non-profit consulting firm that works to create sustainable environments through the creation of new supermarkets in food deserts and underserved communities while benefiting all stakeholders involved. Although we focus on the creation of new supermarkets, we consistently see four main problems that exist in the 6500+ food deserts across the country. Thereâ€™s no food, no healthcare, no money, and no jobs. Because of these four issues, our work is structured in four primary program areas, Sustainable Food Solutions, Health Solutions, Finance Solutions, and Workforce Solutions.
Sustainable Food Solutions creates new supermarkets, turns around existing supermarkets that may be in danger of failing, and works on food recovery systems.
Health Solutions creates in-store health care clinics and offers wrap around nutrition services, including dietitian facilitated Medical Nutrition Therapy, cooking classes and grocery store tours.
Within Finance Solutions, we have a Community Development Financial Institution that lends money to supermarkets at below market rates, and a Smart Public Incentives Program that works on redevelopment grants and New Market Tax Credits.
Finally, Workforce Solutions trains re-entering citizens to work in the supermarket industry, guaranteeing them a job at the completion of our program.
All of these program areas are incredibly important and they all start by leveraging supermarkets as a point of access.