Pasco Work Team

Purpose/Mission Statement: The Pasco Work Team is a collaborative group that focuses on hunger initiatives specific to Pasco County. Members include people working for non-profit and for-profit businesses/agencies and interested citizens with no formal affiliations. Some of members attend monthly and others participate as their schedules allow. The monthly Pasco Work Team meetings are a platform for community engagement, often hosting speakers and presentations from community partners. Meetings also provide an update on TBNEH specific projects and events. These gatherings are a great resource and support for partner organizations, agencies, and businesses to come together and build capacity while finding solutions to community issues and initiatives surrounding hunger.

Goal(s): To end hunger in Pasco County by bringing people together to find solutions that eliminate barriers, increase access and knowledge, and expand the amount of nutritious food available.

Activities: Our current activities include brainstorming/researching new projects and trying to build our work team member numbers and member participation. Our past projects include advocating for and increasing awareness and participation in the Pasco Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) and Weekend Feeding Initiatives through One Community Now and Thomas Promise.

Contact: To join this Work Team or learn more, please contact Patty Jackson, BayCare and Work Team Chair, at or (727) 466-7713.

Next Work Team meeting: Thursday February 20, location TBD. This Work Team usually meets on the third Thursday of each month.

Team Members

Chair: Patty Jackson, BayCare,

ShariBreslinUF/IFAS Family Nutrition Program
Lee AnnCarrFlorida Luxury Realty
PattyJacksonBayCare’s Community Health Activation Team
ChloeKiddTampa Bay Network to End Hunger
GladysSanchezMigrant Education Program, Pasco County Schools
MeganSextonFood and Nutrition Program, Pasco County Schools
AlyssaSmithDepartment of Health-Pasco
PattiTempletonOne Community Now

Progress Notes

Project Progress:

Summer Food Service Program Initiative

We help increase awareness and participation in the Pasco Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) in a variety of ways, including word of mouth, car magnets, social media, e-mails, flyers and poster displays. We also provide valuable feedback on promotional materials and lessons learned. By canvassing areas within a mile of each Summer Break Spot site, Pasco work team members connect with local businesses, churches, community organizations and parents. We learn the characteristics that make a particular site successful, as well as strategies for encouraging parents to allow their children to board summer meal buses or attend an open school site. Then most critically, we pass this vital information on to Megan Sexton, coordinator for Pasco SFSP, and her staff to help enhance the program.  Our success speaks volumes.

Below are 4 years of highlights from our Summer Food Service Program initiative:

  • Summer 2016 – An almost 500 meals per day increase over 2015 and the first year the Pasco program ever made a profit. The amount was $137,400, which was put back into the program. Pasco Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) received the Above and Beyond Award for excellence in expansion and innovation, largely in part to our work team and especially Megan Sexton, the Pasco Schools FNP coordinator.
  • Summer 2017 – Last year our goal was to increase mobile break spot site participation by 50 meals per day. Megan reported a 162 meal per day increase at the mobile sites, which was a 38.6% increase over 2016. In addition, walk-ins (children not affiliated with another program) increased from a couple of hundred in 2016 to close to 5000 in 2017. Pasco SFSP received the Summer Trailblazer award to recognize sponsors that utilize targeted approach methods to increase meals served within their sponsorship. Pasco SFSP also received the USDA National Best Practices Award for 2017, with Megan once again giving our work team much of the credit for the program’s success.
  • Summer 2018-Walk-ins (children not affiliated with another program) increased from a couple of hundred in 2016 to close to 5000 in 2017 and was close to 9,000 in 2018. Participation at last year’s targeted low attendance sites was up over 34% from 2017. There was a 30% increase in mobile site participation over 2017. Despite a significantly higher food cost this year, the Pasco SFSP still made a profit of $45, 270.32, which will be put back into the program. This year the SFSP initiated a social media expansion campaign and received over 36,000 likes on Facebook. Once again, our work team was given a significant amount of the credit for getting the word out and promoting the program in the community.
  • Summer 2019- There was an 866 meals per day (14% increase) over 2018. Over 235,000 meals were served with 5 less serving dates in 2019. Mobile Meals average daily participation increased by 257 meals per day or 30%.  28,000 meals were served on the buses; an additional 6000 meals served from vans. Social media reach more than quadrupled. The highly successful partnership between the Pasco School and Nutrition Program and the TBNEH Pasco work team was highlighted in the February 2019 issue of the School Nutrition Association magazine in an article titled: “Can We Weave a Hunger Safety Net? Aligning the missions and work of school nutrition and anti-hunger organizations in an effort to reduce food insecurity in America” By Arianne Corbett, RD, and Laura Hatch, MPH.  Our partnership is specifically mentioned under the section titled “A Brain Trust.” Here is a link to the electronic version:{%22issue_id%22:564964,%22page%22:18}

Weekend Feeding Program Initiative

Our work team determined it would be most helpful to identify and link leads (organizations/individuals who can adopt a school for at least a year) to Patti Templeton with One Community Now and to Diana Thomas with the Thomas Promise Foundation. Visit  and to learn more about their programs.  The highest need appears to be in West Pasco, particularly for students at the middle and high school level. We developed and are currently distributing a flyer to increase awareness and support for the two largest Weekend Feeding Programs in Pasco, One Community Now’s Pack- A- Sack Program and Thomas Promise Foundation’s Operation Backpack Program.

Other projects in the works:

  • Explore ways to increase participation in the Pasco Schools Breakfast program in collaboration with Arianne Corbett with Leading Health, Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry campaign
  • Explore opportunities to reduce Senior Hunger in Pasco in partnership with Pasco County Senior Services and other community partners.

FYI: Did you know Pasco has a Food Policy Advisory Council?

Meetings are open to the community with opportunity for public comment

The Food Policy Advisory Council (“FPAC”) was established by the Board of County Commissioners on May 19, 2015 for the purpose of supporting an equitable, resilient, local food system in the County and to facilitate the review of responsible policies that improve the access to culturally appropriate, nutritionally sound and affordable food produced in the County.  It will   provide credible, well-conceived community food policy advice that can dramatically reduce instances of chronic disease and obesity, preserve agricultural lands, promote agricultural uses throughout the County, and assist in the development of new businesses in the food system sector.

The FPAC is composed of up to nine (9) members appointed by the Board of County Commissioners and be comprised of:

  1. A farmer residing and farming in Pasco County;
  2. A health care professional employed by the Pasco County Department of Health;
  3. A food/nutrition professional employed by the District School Board of Pasco;
  4. An academic professional specializing in cultural studies/ecology employed by a local university or higher education institution;
  5. A local representative from an established farmer’s market;
  6. An attorney practicing in Pasco County with experience in food systems;
  7. A representative from a not-for-profit organization within the food system sector operating in Pasco County; 8.  A professional employed by the University of Florida’s Institute of Food/Agriculture
  8. Science (“IFAS”) program working in Pasco County’s Cooperative Extension  Program; and
  9. A representative from a grocer/distributor industry.

Membership on the FPAC shall be for a term of two (2) years.

FPAC shall meet at a minimum quarterly or more frequently as agreed upon by a majority vote of the members.  A Pasco County Planning/Development staff member shall provide support based on his/her availability.