Concern for Community

Cooperatives are principled businesses. Principle #7, last but certainly not least, is concern for community. What that means is that as a cooperative we strive every day to work for the sustainable development of our neighborhood and community through policies accepted by the ownership.

Over the last four decades, our grant programs, food donations, paid staff volunteer service hours and other giving projects have built community gardens, fed hungry families, brought local produce into our kids’ classrooms, expanded fresh food access for SNAP-EBT users, and much, much more.

To learn about the many ways we proudly support Principle #7, see what our local partners are up to, or check out our giving report.

WedgeShare Grant

A Cooperative Charitable Giving Program

WedgeShare is a philanthropy program started by the Wedge board and voted on every year by our members. WedgesShare grants fund initiatives and ongoing work of organizations whose missions align closely with the Wedge mission.
This program has been put on hold for the 2017 calendar year. Please check back in 2018 for application dates and details. Note that the call for proposals for our Change Matters (register round up) program will be posted in early October.

2017 WedgeShare Recipients (from the 2016 Wedge owner vote):

Local Partners

At the Wedge, we cultivate relationships with local growers, producers, educators, food justice advocates and change-makers for a more sustainable world. We show our commitment to these communities through the support of our many local partners:

Midwest Food Connection

The Wedge was there from the very beginning of Midwest Food Connection (MFC), a community outreach initiative that has brought natural foods education into elementary schools for the past 20 years. With support from the Wedge, MFC provides children with opportunities to learn about healthy eating, local food, and sustainable and organic agriculture both in the classroom and through field trips to local diversified farms.

True Food Chef Council

The True Food Chef Council is a partnership between MPS’s Culinary and Nutrition Services and the Minneapolis restaurant community that pioneers new school recipes, engages with students in lunchrooms, and raises awareness about healthy eating habits. The Wedge is a proud member of the Chef Council, and collaborates with other members to promote MPS’s commitment to direct sourcing of local foods, scratch cooking and healthy eating.

True Food Taste Tests

Each year MPS’s elementary and middle schools host three lunchtime taste tests that expose students to new recipes, and encourages them to be adventurous eaters and think critically about their food. The Wedge is the primary sponsor for the True Food Taste Tests, an important way to foster lifelong healthy eating habits in kids from an early age.

Giving Report

from our fiscal year of July 1, 2015 to June 30, 2016

You probably know that the Wedge donates a lot of food, money and time to various organizations in our community, but most don’t realize how much. When the Wedge’s annual net income is about $200,000, it puts it into perspective how generously the Wedge gives back.

$50,000 of WedgeShare grants were distributed to these organizations, selected by you:
The Aliveness Project: $5,000
Appetite for Change: $7,650
Compatible Technology International: $3,700
Farmers’ Legal Action Group: $7,750
Midtown Farmers Market: $7,000
Open Arms of MN: $7,600
Shared Ground Farmers Cooperative: $5,000
Tree Trust: $6,300

$302,719 in food to local food shelves.

$6,000 worth of gift cards in various amounts to 140 organizations like… the Will Steeger Foundation, Free Arts MN, Spark-Y, RECLAIM, Wildlife Rehabilitation and Release, American Cancer Society, and Urban Roots

$49,440 to Midwest Food Connection, which supported 249 lessons at seven Minneapolis schools.

Ever rounded up at the register? That’s Change Matters. And a total of $34,331 was raised that way for local community-enrichment organizations.

Staff volunteered 175 hours at organizations like…
Friends School Plant Sale, Free Arts Minnesota, Full Cycle (Pillsbury United Communities), Hennepin County Library Bookstore, KFAI Radio, Lyndale Community School, Midwest Food Connection, Open Arms of Minnesota, Open Streets, MN AIDS Project, Simpson Housing Services, Stable Pathways, and Twin Cities Public Television (TPT)

43,000 samples of new foods were distributed to K–8th graders at 44 Minneapolis Public Schools for True Food Taste Tests.

Change Matters

Our monthly Change Matters program provides shoppers an opportunity to help local community-enrichment organizations by making small-change donations, which accumulate into a meaningful contribution for the recipient. The recipient changes monthly, with organizations chosen by a committee of Wedge staff.

Change Matters! Next time you’re at the checkout we hope you’ll consider “rounding-up”. If you prefer, you may donate a larger dollar amount at once by asking the cashier to add it to your total. All donations will appear on your itemized receipt and are tax-deductible. With your generous support, we can ensure that valuable organizations like these continue to work and grow in our community.

Apply to be a Change Matters Recipient

Proposals for the 2018 calendar year will be accepted in the fall of 2017. Please check back here for more information closer to the date.
E-mail with any questions or concerns. Organizations interested in being recipients of our Change Matters program can find the proposal guidelines here: Change Matters Application.

2017 Change Matters Recipients:

January – Minnesota Internship Center
February – Simpson Housing Services
March – MN FoodShare March Campaign
April – College Possible
May – Midwest Food Connection
June – Neighborhood Roots
July – 24th Street Urban Farm – Mashkiikii Gitigan
August – Kulture Klub Collaborative
September – North Country Food Alliance
October – Early Childhood Family Education
November – Open Arms of Minnesota
December – Vail Place

Donations Request

The Wedge supports community events with donations in the form of $25-$50 gift cards. These can be used as prizes, silent auction items or to purchase food for the event. We do not donate food or deli items. Requests must be made at least two weeks prior to the event.

We give preference to organizations and events whose mission relates to cooperatives, environmental sustainability, food, or agriculture. In addition, we give preference to other organizations and events that serve or benefit communities served by the Wedge. Non-profit (501c3) status is preferred but not required. Organizations are eligible for one donation per year.

Use our Contact page to send your request*. Select “donation request” from the drop down menu and include the following information:

Name and contact information (email and/or phone number)
Organization name, website, email, phone number, and address
Event date(s)*
Brief description of event and who it benefits
How the Wedge will be acknowledged

*We’re taking a summer break for donations. We will be processing donation requests received through the end of May 2017 and resume processing requests in fall 2017.