Hunger Council of Washington County

The Hunger Council of Washington County was one of the first two pilot councils launched with support from Northfield Savings Bank in 2006. Washington and Chittenden Counties are Vermont’s two most populous counties and pioneered the Hunger Council model. In the first three pilot years, both Washington and Chittenden County Councils were instrumental in:

  • Expanding access to 3SquaresVT (formerly known as food stamps) to more Vermonters statewide.

  • Passing state legislation to provide free breakfast to all low-income students in Vermont in 2008 and in advocating for the passage of similar legislation for lunch in 2013.

  • Passing the 2009 Child Nutrition Omnibus bill that helped feed children during the summer, in school, and in afterschool programs.

The Co-Chairs of this Hunger Council are: 

  • Eileen Peltier, Executive Director, Downstreet Housing and Community Development

  • Tawnya Kristen, Executive Director, Green Mountain United Way

most recent meeting of the hunger council of washington county:

The Hunger Council last met on October 4th. This was the first trial of this year’s experiment in alternating between in-person and conference call meetings. The group shared updates on coming holiday season assistance programs and reviewed trends and intersections between food security and other concerns in the community. The meeting agenda is available HERE and meeting minutes are HERE.

Upcoming hunger Council meeting:

The Hunger Council's next quarterly meeting will be on Thursday, December 13th. More information and a draft agenda will be available closer to the meeting date.

This meeting will be held in person.

2018/2019 Meeting Schedule:

  • October 4, 2018 - conference call

  • December 13, 2018 - Downstreet Housing and Community Development

  • March 21, 2019 - conference call

  • May 30, 2019 - Downstreet Housing and Community Development

All meetings, unless otherwise noted, will be from 2:00 - 4:00. The 2018-2019 meetings will rotate between being held in-person and by conference call. All in-person meetings will be held at Downstreet Housing and Community Development, Suite 100, 22 Keith Avenue, Barre - a call-in option will be available for the in-person meetings as well.

Hunger Council membership is open to anyone interested in learning about and tackling food insecurity in their communities. For more information, contact Jenna O'Donnell, Hunger Council Manager, at jodonnell@hungerfreevt.org .


In March 2016, the Hunger Council published a Letter to the Editor in support of the Zap the Gap Campaign as a way to increase access to afterschool and summer meals and programming. The Letter to the Editor was published in the Times Argus, and is available HERE.