Hershey Convention Center

325 University Drive, Hershey, PA17033

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Maria D'Isabella

717.547.6319 - mdisabella@centralpafoodbank.org

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The Central Pennsylvania Food Bank’s annual Agency Appreciation Conference is a one-day conference for the food distribution network. This conference will provide workshops tailored to your interests to enhance the mission of your agency. There will also be time allotted to network with colleagues for new ideas and solutions to current issues you may be facing.  Other features of the conference include a luncheon, door prizes and exhibitor resource tables.

REGISTER TODAY! Early Bird rate has been extended to August 18th.  Don't wait until it's too late!


7:00 - 7:30 AM   Tour of Harrisburg warehouse, 3908 Corey Road, Harrisburg 17109 (optional)

8:00-8:55 AM     Doors Open at Hershey Convention Center

8:00 -9:30 AM    Continental Breakfast                              

9:00-9:10 AM     Welcome  Joe Arthur, Executive Director, Central PA Food Bank

9:10-9:40 AM     Keynote Speaker  Dr. Daniel R. George, Associate Professor, Penn State College of Medicine

Wade Edris, Scientist, Penn State College of Medicine

Keynote Summary

As diet-related chronic diseases continue to increase, it has become clear that healthcare institutions must focus on preventive care, food security, and other social determinants of health—areas not normally in the purview of Western medicine. In recent years, Penn State College of Medicine has launched a farmers market and community garden on its campus to begin addressing these issues in our region, and a “Food As Medicine” program provides multiple opportunities for medical students and other trainees to work hands-on in community health settings with diverse populations of at-risk patients and community members. These opportunities include a culinary medicine 4th-year elective hosted at a local senior center, and a variety of “prescription produce” programs at local farmers markets and community gardens that enable students to work as “nutrition mentors” with at-risk patients, as well as homeless shelter residents and recently resettled refugees. Our presentation will share case studies of these initiatives and suggest strategies for forging community collaborations that enable not only food distribution networks but also opportunities to connect health trainees with low-income, underserved community members at-risk for chronic disease. We will also provide insights into how the plants that grow in our forests, meadows, and gardens can literally serve as medicine. 

 9:50-10:50 AM  Breakout Session One - Options    

A. Charity: It’s All About Me

Kathy Anderson-Martin, Director of Resource Development, The Salvation Army Harrisburg, Capital City Region

Serving so many people with so many needs can be exhausting and sometimes even result in compassion fatigue. Even interaction with volunteers and supporters can be draining as it sometimes feels like “it’s all about me” vs. all about the mission. Learn tips and tricks on how renewed perspectives on life, priorities and mission can make all of the difference when helping others and advancing the cause.

B. Conflict Management

Judy Chambers, Economic and Community Development Educator, Penn State Extension

Conflict is a part of life, but too much of it is a drain on critical resources like time, money, and people.  Understand how to manage it, recognize common causes of conflict and learn techniques for managing or resolving conflict with clients, coworkers, and volunteers.  Real life scenarios and solutions will be shared during this interactive workshop. 

C. Food as Medicine

Amanda Frankeny, Registered Dietitian and Community Nutritionist, The Pennsylvania Nutrition Education Network

Maryann Smith, Nutrition Educator, Central Pennsylvania Food Bank

Fish reduces the risk of depression! Run for dementia prevention! Fruits and vegetables shrink cancer risk. Let’s be real - some people can’t afford fish, running can’t happen on dangerous roads occupied by drugs and violence, and fresh produce can get costly. Health is an art that must take into account the whole person’s life - income, issues surrounding poverty, education, race, safety, transportation, housing, insurance, emotional-wellbeing, access to healthy food, and so much more. That’s why innovative partnerships take these factors into account as they look to develop better diabetes prevention strategies, increase the distribution of healthy foods for everyone, address food insecurity in healthcare settings, and much more. After this talk, you will understand the foods that can help you and your clients perform better at work and at home. You’ll see the importance of intentional partnerships as they build communities that disrupt cycle of hunger; creating places where healthy food is more appealing, affordable, and easily accessible for everyone. Pantries and other agencies play a huge role these solutions.

D. Leadership:  Serving From Where You Are

Marla Sheaffer, Projects & Operations Manager, Leadership Harrisburg Area

No matter what your position or title within your organization, you can make the choice to be a leader. By implementing the essentials of servant leadership, individuals can learn to develop others, influence change, and improve your organization.

E. SNAP:  America’s Safety Net

Tara Davis, SNAP Outreach Manager, Central Pennsylvania Food Bank

Laura Goddard, SNAP Outreach Associate, Central Pennsylvania Food Bank

Loyna De Jesus, SNAP Outreach Associate, Central Pennsylvania Food Bank

SNAP is America’s Safety net, meant to increase food security and reduce hunger by increasing access to food, healthful diet, and nutrition education for low-income Americans. In this workshop, we will give a brief over view of what SNAP is, how the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank helps households sign up for SNAP. In addition, we will also briefly discuss how SNAP makes a difference in the health of those that are food insecure and the SNAP-Ed resources available to help clients make healthier economical choices at the grocery store. Lastly, there will be an update on the latest changes going on within the Department of Human Services and touch base on what kind of advocacy role you can take to support the Central PA Food Bank.

F. Valuing Diversity

Rev. Dr. Monica Dawkins-Smith, Conference Minister and President, Penn Central Conference United Church of Christ

We live in an increasingly diverse community and world. To lead an effective organization and a compassionate team, it is important to reflect, value and understand the broad spectrum of diverse people you serve.  Learn how diversity can strengthen innovation, team performance and collaboration.

G. Using Design Thinking to Improve Wellness Programs

Dr. Chris Sciamanna, Professor of Medicine and Public Health Sciences, Penn State College of Medicine  

In this interactive presentation, we will discuss how Design Thinking can be used to increase the impact and engagement of wellness programs, based on Dr. Sciamanna's experience with the Band Together strength training program, now being applied to a healthy eating program. 

H. Visit Exhibits

I. Youth Programs: An Overview

Jeremy Arnold, Child Hunger Corps Member, Central Pennsylvania Food Bank

David Lloyd, Youth Programs Manager, Central Pennsylvania Food Bank

Donna Lattanzio, Youth Programs Associate, Central Pennsylvania Food Bank

Pam Hicks, Programs Manager – Northern Tier, Central Pennsylvania Food Bank

Bill Simonson, School Breakfast Outreach Coordinator, Central Pennsylvania Food Bank

Have you ever wondered what the difference is between a backpack program and a school pantry? Would you like to serve a nutritious meal for your after school program but don’t know where to start? Are you interested in serving summer meals? Come meet the Youth Programs team and learn the answers to these questions and more! We will talk about the programs we offer and answer your questions.

11:00-12:00 PM Breakout Session Two - Options

A. Advocacy 101: State and Federal Policy and Why It Matters

Erin Smith Wachter, Director of Advocacy and Public Policy, Central Pennsylvania Food Bank

Sheilah Borne, Associate Vice President of Governmental Affairs, Penn State Health

Kerry Golden, Majority Executive Director, Pennsylvania House of Representatives Agriculture and Rural Affairs Committee

John Milliron, Esq., Retired Partner, Milliron & Goodman

Erin Wilson, Legislative Assistant, Office of US Representative Glenn ‘GT’ Thompson

What is advocacy? How do I engage with my public officials? Why is advocacy important to my organization? Join members of the Food Bank’s Advocacy/Public Policy Committee, and staff members who work directly for legislators, as they unravel the basics of advocacy. Join us in this interactive and engaging session to dive deep into what is happening at the state and federal level, the impact these policies have on your organization, and learn how to advocate from the experts! 

B. Communication Styles

Skip Brown, Owner and Consultant, Connect Synergy

This session will cover communication styles, overview of DiSC behavioral style model, and offer tips to be more effective in communicating with others. 

C. Compliant or Not Compliant…That is the Question!

Steven Early, Agency Services Manager, Central Pennsylvania Food Bank

Jennifer Kurelja, Agency Services Manager, Central Pennsylvania Food Bank

This session will cover what to expect during a site visit and the requirements of your agency agreement regarding compliance.  You will leave knowing how to be prepared.  

D. Grant Detective Training: How to Find Funders

Lauren Jacobs, Grant Writer, Central Pennsylvania Food Bank

The hardest part of writing grants is finding the funders. This workshop will help you conduct effective searches for funders that are the right fit for your organization. We’ll look at community and private foundations and provide tips for incorporating the work of grant detective into your routine. Whether you are responsible for obtaining grants, wondering where to start, or simply curious about how to improve your efforts, the session will give you an opportunity to share best practices, learn from your peers and do a little networking.

E. Hidden Rules of Poverty

Chuck Holt, Executive Director, The Factory Ministries

Often times organizations have a top down approach to help those struggling with poverty-related issues. The result often leads to enabling, changing, or judging. In order to build relationships of mutual respect and bring every class to the decision making table we need to understand the “default wiring” of each class. This workshop will explore various hidden rules of the three economic class environments.

F. Programs:  Alphabet Soup – MS, FE, CSFP, ES

Adam Peterson, ElderShare Program Manager, Central Pennsylvania Food Bank

Pam Hicks, Programs Manager – Northern Tier, Central Pennsylvania Food Bank

The Food Bank manages different programs that assist seniors, veterans, and more!  Come learn about point in time mobile distributions called Fresh Express.  Another mobile distribution program is called MilitaryShare that provides food for families with at least one member who has served, or is serving, in the armed forces. The Food Bank also offers two mobile food box distributions for low income seniors. These programs are called CSFP (Commodity Supplemental Food Program) and ElderShare. Learn how these two programs function, what differentiates the two, requirements for eligibility, how many boxes are distributed per month and how you can become a program partner.

G. Screen and Intervene… Your way to connect your program to healthcare intervention programs

Jorja Barton, Health Innovation Coordinator, Central Pennsylvania Food Bank

Judy Dillon, Director of Community Health, Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center

Brenda Buescher, Health Promotion Specialist, Lancaster General Health/Penn Medicine

Anna Ziegler, Clinical Dietitian, Geisinger Health

Maria Welch, Wellness Specialist, Geisinger Health

Joe Anne Ward-Cottrell, Health Educator,  Community Health and Wellness, WellSpan Health

Join this session to learn more about our healthcare partnerships and the work that that each of them are providing within the community.  This session is an opportunity for you to learn about how your program can become involved with this work and the impact that it will have on the health and well-being of the consumers you serve.  Panel members include representatives from YMCA Harrisburg, Lancaster General Hospital, Geisinger Health, PSU Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, and Hamilton Health.  Raise the bar!  Food IS Medicine and you CAN make a difference!

H.  Vision and Reality – The Balance

Kathy Anderson-Martin, Director of Resource Development, The Salvation Army Harrisburg, Capital City Region

Within each group, there are passionate visionaries who have great ideas for the future (hopefully!).  Others are laser focused on diligently and thoroughly completing current tasks (hopefully!).  We’ll discuss how working together to balance passion and reality can help us set and achieve common goals – for today and into the future.

I. Visit Exhibits

12:00-1:30 PM   Appreciation Luncheon & Luncheon Keynote

Dr. Lauren S. Hughes, Deputy Secretary for Health Innovation, Pennsylvania Department of Health

1:30-2:00 PM                 Networking Session - Options

A. Agency Enabled Retail Donations

Learn how the program works, the benefits to your agency, who the donors include (from retail to farmers) and how to report these donations. Join us as we discuss this additional opportunity for your food sourcing needs.

B. Bridging the Financial Education Gap

Interested in offering financial education to your clients, but not sure how to go about it? This workshop will review key financial education concepts, highlight available resources, and offer suggestions for practical, low- or no cost ways to incorporate financial literacy into your agency's outreach efforts.

C. Nutrition Programs: EFNEP and TRACKS – Penn State Extension

Come learn about nutrition programming available from Penn State Extension. 

D. Power of the Network:   Meal Programs

Come listen to experts in the field share best practices, tips and tricks about meal programs.

E. Power of the Network:    Multi-Service Agencies

Come listen to experts in the field share best practices, tips and tricks about multi-service agencies.

F. Power of the Network:    Pantry Programs

Come listen to experts in the field share best practices, tips and tricks about pantry programs.

G. Power of the Network:   Senior Programs

Come listen to experts in the field share best practices, tips and tricks about senior programs.

H. Power of the Network:   Youth Programs

Come listen to experts in the field share best practices, tips and tricks about youth programs.

I.   Visit Exhibits

2:10-3:10 PM     Breakout Session Three - Options

A. Advocacy 101: State and Federal Policy and Why It Matters (repeat)

B. Be Prepared, Be Safe: Food Safety Refresher

David Lloyd, Youth Programs Manager, Central Pennsylvania Food Bank

When working in a volunteer capacity or supervising events where interaction with volunteers is integral, this workshop provides volunteers with basic food safety knowledge. This class covers food safety basics for pantries.  

C. Communication Styles (repeat)

D. Food as Medicine (repeat)

E. Fundraising:  How to Identify Prospects & Get the Conversation Started

Chad Barger, Principal, Productive Fundraising

Join Chad Barger, CFRE, for a session focused on figuring out who you should talk to, getting the meeting, figuring out what questions to ask and following up afterward.  Chad will walk you step by step through the process he has successfully used for years as he works to raise support for a charity.

F. Getting Started in Cultural Competency

Judy Chambers, Economic and Community Development Educator, Penn State Extension

Embracing diversity starts from within.  This workshop will explore basic steps along the awareness-to-action continuum and how we each can change our behavior to be more understanding of cultural differences, especially with our customers and clients.

G. Hidden Rules of Poverty (repeat)

H. R U Kidding Me?  Humor as a Coping Tool

Jeanne McClintick, Community Health Educator, HCP/ Hospice of Central PA

Stress can take a toll on those who are constantly trying to meet the needs of others.  Humor is a wonderful coping mechanism for stress.  Humor helps us physically, emotionally and spiritually.  We will discuss appropriate use of humor, tips for finding humor and most importantly we will laugh.

I. Visit Exhibits

3:15 - 3:25 PM    Advocacy Update  Erin Smith Wachter, Director of Advocacy and Public Policy

3:25 – 3:55 PM   Partner of the Year Awards - We’re All in It Together

3:55-4:00 PM      Raffles, Grand Prize, Evaluations and Closing Remarks

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3908 Corey Road

Harrisburg, PA 17109


717.561.4636 (fax)

Office Hours:
M-TR: 8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Friday: 8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.


3301 Wahoo Drive

Williamsport, PA 17701


570.321.8024 (fax)

Office Hours:
M-TR: 8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Friday: 8:00 a.m - 4:30 p.m.

The Central Pennsylvania Food Bank is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit organization.
EIN: #23-2202250

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