Event Schedule

The 2020 Sunshine Summit to End Hunger is designed to provide attendees with the latest in research and proven tools in the fight against hunger. The10th Annual SSEH is a free two-day high-impact event that will explore research, programs, and best practices related to this year’s theme “Global Effects of COVID-19 on Food Systems and Local Effects on Emergency Feeding Efforts”.  Sessions will be locally, nationally, and internationally focused on the experiences of families struggling with food insecurity and different response programs and techniques. Register now to save your virtual seat at

The agenda below may change.     All times are listed in Eastern Time (ET)

Thursday, October 29, 2020

8:30 am — 9:00 am – Log-On / Networking

9:00 am — 9:15 am – Welcome

Caitlyn Peacock, Tampa Bay Network to End Hunger

Maggie Rogers, Tampa Bay Network to End Hunger

Niki Foster, The Mosaic Company

9:15 am — 10:15 am – Addressing Child Hunger during COVID-19

Jeremy Everett, Texas Hunger Initiative

Jeremy Everett, Executive Director at the Baylor University Collaborative on Hunger and Poverty, will discuss creative ways organizations are developing scalable, multi-sectoral responses to addressing child food insecurity and how we might improve conditions for families moving forward.

10:30 am — 11:30 am – Breakout Sessions #1

  • Garden Strategies for Urban Agriculture

Kitty Wallace, Coalition of Community Gardens

Lena Young Green, Coalition of Community Gardens

The Coalition of Community Gardens, in collaboration with the City of Tampa and the Hillsborough Soil & Water Conservation District has developed the Garden Strategies for Urban Agriculture for Hillsborough County to expand accessibility.  Utilizing 5 urban clusters to expand production and increased access to local produce from garden markets. BENEFIT:   Through the eyes of a pandemic we have seen the challenges of maintaining the current system of producing and delivering food to our community.  By establishing gardens that support a local system to increase production and accessibility we support all citizens but especially those who experience food insecurity.                                               

  • Cultivating Resilient Food Systems in a Time of Pandemics

Ann Steensland, Global Programs office of the Virginia Tech College of Agriculture and Life Sciences

COVID-19 is testing the capacities of our global food systems and increasing resilience has never been more urgent. Research has identified three capabilities that are central to resilience in agricultural production and food systems. The capacity to absorb the impact and cope with the immediate problems with minimal negative outcomes.  The capacity to adapt during a crisis by changing management practices to minimize the impacts.  The capacity to transform systems to prevent and prepare for future crises. This presentation will present insights on how COVID-19 has challenged our food systems, and describes steps that can be taken to cultivate resilience.

  • Adapting school meal programs during the COVID pandemic: Perspectives & parallels from a global context in the Republic of Congo & a US context in Orlando, Florida

Jean-Martin Bauer, World Food Programme, Congo-Brazzaville

Mariam Mengistie, St. Lukes United Methodist Church

Moderator: Tanuja Rastogi, Bread for the World

In March 2020, as a measure to limit the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic, all schools were closed in the Republic of Congo, and thus the school canteens also had to stop. The crisis led to the deterioration of food security and nutrition indicators at the national level, particularly in urban areas where vulnerabilities have increased. The national education working group has expressed concern that the pandemic has led to an acute nutrition and educational gap. Learn how the World Food Programme responded and what the future looks like.

  • Federal, State and Local Response Efforts to the COVID-19 Pandemic”

Mikhail Scott, Florida Department of Agriculture

Ellen Vollinger, Food Research & Action Center

Moderator: Arianne Corbett, Leading Health

The COVID-19 pandemic has shaken the US food system and exacerbated underling issues of food insecurity and hunger. Throughout the pandemic, federal, state and local agencies have had to adapt quickly to a changing food landscape to support children, families and seniors that have been impacted by this crisis. Ellen Vollinger, Legal Director for the Food Research & Action Center, and Mikhail Scott, Strategic Partnerships Coordinator with the Florida Department of Agriculture, will share key insights into the Federal and State response efforts to the COVID-19 crisis and provide an outlook on what’s next to support our communities as we fight to overcome this pandemic.

  • Helping Seniors and Homebound Access Food and More During COVID-19

Erika Kelly, Meals on Wheels America

Mark Adler, Meals on Wheels South Florida

Steve King, Meals On Wheels of Tampa

COVID-19 triggered a wave of unprecedented demand in the Sunshine State as tens of thousands more older adults suddenly became homebound and congregate dining centers shifted to delivery and pick-up options. As a result, Meals on Wheels programs across our state are serving more meals, to more people and with new delivery methods and processes in place. This session will examine the impact of COVID-19 at the national, state and local levels, as well as explore topics such as social isolation, funding and resource constraints, partnerships, leadership and more.

11:50 am — 12:50 pm – Breakout Sessions #2

  • Agri-food Humanitarian Supply Chain Resilience during the COVID-19 Pandemic

Elizabeth Dunn, College of Public Health, University of South Florida

Ashley Hydrick, College of Public Health, University of South Florida

The COVID-19 (SARS-CoV-2) pandemic poses an urgent threat to the U.S. food supply chain and humanitarian operations with impacts ranging from the agricultural sector to local retail and non-profit organizations dedicated to getting food to those most in need. These entities work to cope with a new set of challenges due to COVID-19. The purpose of our research is to improve understanding of our community food systems in Hillsborough County by identifying challenges, systems failures, opportunities, and innovative strategies concerning food production, distribution, retail, and community access during this pandemic. In this ongoing study, USF students, faculty, and partners engage key stakeholders in semi-structured interviews to gain insights on current perspectives regarding supply chain resiliency, impacts on operations, existing levels of preparedness, and tested innovative practices. Review of these experiences will improve future mitigation and preparedness practices and build more resilient agri-food humanitarian operations during disaster events. During this session, we will be sharing our study methods and progress along with a preliminary view of our findings.

  • Unlocking Opportunities for Local Food Entrepreneurs During COVID-19

Daniel Mitchell, Pasco Economic Development Council, East Pasco Entrepreneur Center

Global disruption has caused mass problems on a local scale.  Local problems need precise solutions.  Entrepreneurship, by definition, allows local risk-takers to provide solutions based on real-time supply and demand issues.  In this breakout session, we’ll discuss how to identify and unlock opportunities for your local entrepreneurial ecosystem to do well by doing good and solve our very local problems, caused by this very global disruption. Topics discussed: cottage food business, commercial kitchen incubators, identifying potential business ideas and finding entrepreneurs to meet the need, encouraging local stakeholders to provide flexibility and resources to allow new businesses to move quickly in addressing changing needs.

  • The Impact of COVID-19 on Africa’s Food Security: Policy Responses for a United Continent

Faustine Wabwire

Moderator: Florence French Fagan, Bread for the World

The presenter of this workshop will speak from her personal capacity and focus on what African governments and partners are doing to respond to the effects of COVID.

  • Towards a Measure of Household Food Security Resilience in the United States

Eric Calloway, Gretchen Swanson Center for Nutrition

Moderator: Richa Bisht, USF Morsani

Social-ecological resilience is defined as a system’s ability to absorb a disturbance and remain in the same state, self-organize in response to disturbance, and build and increase capacity after the disturbance. There has been increasing momentum, primarily internationally, to examine the household as a system and develop measures to assess a household’s resilience to financial shocks that might otherwise lead to food insecurity. We at the Gretchen Swanson Center for Nutrition are currently conducting a measurement development project to address measurement gaps related to food security — one of those gaps being Household Food Security Resilience. In this breakout session we will cover the background and recent progress made internationally, as well as describe our own project and preliminary findings. 

1:10 pm — 2:10 pm – Feeding India’s Response During COVID-19

Ankit Kawatra, Feeding India

2:10 pm — 2:15 pm – Day one closing

Friday, October 30, 2020

8:30 am — 9:00 am – Log-On / Networking

9:00 am — 9:15 am – Welcome

Caitlyn Peacock, Tampa Bay Network to End Hunger

Nikki Foster, The Mosaic Company

9:15 am — 10:15 am Food Insecurity Before, During, and After COVID-19: What Can be Done?

Craig Gundersen, University of Illinois

The COVID-19 pandemic has drawn extensive attention to the problem of food insecurity in the United States.  Nevertheless, long before COVID-19, food insecurity has posed a grave challenge to tens of millions of Americans.  In this presentation I provide an overview of the food insecurity landscape pre-COVID-19 and how this is likely to change in the near-term.  Fortunately, I then turn to a tool – the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly known as the Food Stamp Program) – that can be leveraged to substantially reduce the magnitude and consequences of food insecurity.

10:30 am — 11:30 am – Breakout Sessions #3

  • Florida’s Food System and Issues in Policy

DeChant, University of South Florida

This presentation will comment on Florida’s food system and issues in policy.  The presentation will contextualize the state’s food system relative to the global system and America’s cultural norms.  It will engage the role of policy as both an active and passive force in shaping attitudes and actions related to food production, distribution, and consumption.  Issues related to policy will be considered, including how policy is developed and by whom, and to what extent food policy can be considered both an individual and community action. Overarching themes of the presentation will be food justice and sovereignty, sustainability, and our ecological crisis.

  • Farm Share COVID-19 Relief Efforts

Stephen Shelley, Farm Share

Stephen will discuss how there are currently two pandemics in Florida: COVID-19 and food insecurity. The presentation will include his experience working to provide food for those fighting food insecurities before and during COVID-19 and how the pandemic has increased the need for food nonprofits. From March to the end of September, Farm Share distributed more than 78 million pounds of food, compared to typically distributing 104 million pounds of food per year. He will also share an overview of the work Farm Share has accomplished by working with Florida leaders, farmers, and volunteers. The presentation will conclude with a call to action for others to help with the fight food-insecure Floridians. Other key points include: Supply, disruption inflow of food during the pandemic; Retail and farmer supply and demand and how they are connected; The impact the pandemic has had on Farm Share and how Farm Share has responded; and  What’s happening now and how we are serving Floridians.

  • Bringing a Positive Change in the Lives of Smallholder Farmers

Shashikant Bhende, The Mosaic Company

Krishi Jyoti project or “enlightened agriculture,” is a joint effort of the Mosaic Company Foundation, Mosaic India Pvt Ltd and S M Sehgal Foundation, that is aligned with the Sustainable Development Goal 2 of achieving Zero Hunger. The partnership between these two organizations is based on shared guiding principles and concerns for the smallholder farmers of India. The Mosaic Company (NYSE: MOS) is the world’s leading integrated producer and marketer of concentrated phosphate and potash and is a fortune 500 brand. Mosaic is a prominent crop nutrient company that has embraced CSR as one of its key governance policies. The company has adopted a “triple bottom line” that includes earnings, environmental protection, and social justice, and its work is consistent with these ideals. Krishi Jyoti project aims to build capacities of farmers to increase farm productivity and promotes water conservation to achieve greater food security in the Haryana, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh. Krishi Jyoti also promotes education among children in villages by renovating school infrastructure in government schools.

  • Part I Race Equity & Policy – Racial Wealth Gap Learning Simulation

Florence French Fagan, Bread for the World

The simulation guides participants to an understanding of why racial equity is so important to ending hunger and poverty in the United States. Our hope is that participants, in becoming more aware of structural inequality, can support policies that undo and/or reduce disparities.  Be sure to sign up for Part II “Race Equity – Undoing Racism Applying the Racial Equity Lens to Programs and Policy.”

  • The Impact of COVID-19 on Hunger, Health, and Healthcare Systems in Our Communities

Lisa Bell, BayCare Health System

Kimberly Williams, AdventHealth Carollwood

Moderator: Shaina Bent, St. Petersburg Free Clinic

 11:50 am — 12:50 pm – Breakout Sessions #4

  • Florida Vegetable Gardening

Amanda Streets, Living Roots Eco Design

There’s nothing better than fresh, crisp lettuce or vine ripened tomatoes… You can be a successful gardener, even in Florida!  We will unpack some of the common problems that Florida vegetable gardeners face and some simple solutions, and learn how to take advantage of Florida’s year round growing seasons (even the hot summer months!)

  • Solving Hunger through Social Enterprise

Eleanor Saunders, ECHO

The term social enterprise is showing up everywhere. Join me as we answer the questions: What exactly is it? Is it right for my organization? Do I have what it takes to be a social entrepreneur? What resources are out there to help me? What are the pitfalls to avoid? Who should be on my team? This will be an interactive workshop with practical take aways.

  • Part II Race Equity – Undoing Racism Applying the Racial Equity Lens to Programs and Policy

Marlysa Gamblin, Bread for the World           

Part II Race Equity – Undoing Racism Applying the Racial Equity Lens to Programs and Policy” will be an interactive workshop that equips participants with the next step of what is needed to address racism—racial equity. Participants will learn what racial equity is and walk through the “Racial Equity Policy Scorecard”— a practical tool develop by Bread for the World Institute to help them rate how well policies are promoting racial equity. Participants will then have a chance to rate various COVID-19 responses efforts using the tool, and hear about racially equitable responses to address food insecurity during COVID-19, that is featured in an upcoming report from Bread for the World Institute.

  • Meals on the Go: Innovation and Scaling During COVID19

Mandy Cloninger, Feeding Tampa Bay

Learn how Feeding Tampa Bay & Trinity Café’s meals on the go change lives one meal at time. These programs provide a healthy, nutritious reheatable meal for families, children and seniors at a low cost, thereby improving the health and capability of those they serve. The production of these meals helps our community by training neighbors who have experienced barriers to employment learn culinary arts skills, earn a certification and ultimately, gain an income through employment. Learn how they have been able to help employ furloughed restaurant workers and scale production while maintaining a low cost of $2/meal during the COVID-19 response. While this effort has been charitable and the meals have been provided free of charge, they have the opportunity to utilize the framework of potential customers that have been developed including seniors, low-income housing residents as well as the significant supporters of FTB as potential customers to launch this as a sustainable social enterprise. 

  • The Impact of COVID-19 on Immigrant Farmworkers

Margarita Romo, Farmworkers Self-Help

An estimated two to three million farmworkers are employed throughout the United States and 1.2 billion across the globe. Farmworkers feed the world through their labor, bringing fruits, vegetables and other crops to homes across the nation. Their work is critical, yet earn poverty wages, work under substandard conditions and face a myriad of health and other issues due to their living and employment conditions. Given this reality and the onset of the global COVID-19 pandemic, learn about the unique health considerations and welfare of the farmworker community, their families and the security of our entire food supply.

1:10 pm — 2:10 pm Feeding India’s Response During COVID-19

Srishti Jain, Feeding India

2:10 pm — 2:15 pm – Closing Remarks





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