116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
CEDAR RAPIDS — In response to last summer’s derecho, Linn County has launched a Resiliency Hub to provide resources to community members, especially in times of crisis.
The hub, in the Fillmore Building, 520 11th St. NW, in Cedar Rapids, initially will be open 4 to 5 p.m. Tuesdays for a food pantry.
The hub will evolve to offer three resources — information; solar-charging stations for electronic devices and public Wi-Fi; and local and nutritious food, a county news release said.
“The derecho storm event of August 2020 revealed the vital need to provide critical resources, especially in extreme times of crises,” the release said. “Linn County seeks to provide a model for other municipalities to create hubs of their own.”
Though the hub will focus on providing essential resources in times of crisis, it also has day-to-day value, Linn County Sustainability Manager Tamara Marcus said.
The hub, she said, will “have value year-round — providing a space where the local community can access critical resources on a regular basis,” Marcus said.
The first step in developing the hub is creating a way to provide access to local food, the release said.
The county is partnering with not-for-profits including Feed Iowa First, the NAACP and the Salvation Army to develop an urban farm and community garden.
Feed Iowa First has committed to developing the urban farming plots that will be managed by the NAACP Cedar Rapids Climate and Environment Committee, the release said.
“It is a well-situated location to entice community participation in agriculture, and we’re really looking forward to seeing the growth not only of local foods, but of interest in the local food system,” Feed Iowa First Executive Director Carter Oswood said.
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