Camille Smith, left, and Rahma Naji, past intern and youth garden program participant, respectively, with St. Mary’s Nutrition Center, with vegetable seedlings. Contributed photo

The Good Food Council of Lewiston-Auburn will honor and celebrate the contributions of five outstanding local youth and/or youth groups who have supported a healthy local food system from farm-to-fork.

The public is invited to submit nominations of individuals and/or groups ages 11 to 25, living in Androscoggin County, for consideration to win a Youth Food Charter Champion Award. Nominations can be submitted online through June 30 online at goodfood4LA.org.

Information about award categories, including examples of qualities and actions that could qualify for an award, are also found on the website. Actions or self-education related “food systems issues” could be fitting qualifications to win an award. Young individuals and youth groups passionate about issues such as ending hunger, local foods, farmland preservation, gardening, composting and food policy are encouraged to nominate themselves, or be nominated.

Awards are to be given out at an outdoor, socially-distanced event this summer; exact date and details are to be announced by the council. The presenting sponsor of the 2021 awards is Bangor Savings Bank, who contributed to the prize package for winners. Lewiston restaurant DaVinci’s Eatery also contributed.

In addition to an award, five winners (each individual or group) will each receive a $100 Buoy Local Card that can be used in more than 1,200 local businesses across the Bangor Savings Bank footprint, and a $50 gift card to DaVinci’s.

The council gives Food Charter Champion Awards annually to highlight the efforts of local individuals and entities to create a more vibrant and sustainable local food system. Those honored with awards “lead by example” in one or more of the five principles of the Lewiston-Auburn Community Food Charter. Food charter awards have been awarded to entities like organizations, businesses, municipalities and community groups; this is the first year all winners will be young people.

The public is invited to follow the council on Facebook and Instagram for Award updates. For questions or support, contact Julia Harper at 207-464-4800 or [email protected].

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