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King County Food System Planning: Opportunity for Community Engagement Contract

SUBCONTRACTING OPPORTUNITY

King County Food System Planning: Opportunity for Community Engagement Contract

POSTING DATE: 03/26/2024

DEADLINE FOR SUBMITTING BIDS: 04/12/2024

Contract Location: King County, WA

Contract description:

Overview
New Venture Advisors is seeking proposals from community-based organizations located in and serving King County, WA to co-design and implement an equitable, inclusive community engagement strategy that facilitates meaningful, representative participation from diverse King County residents. This community engagement effort will support King County and King Conservation District’s 2024 Local Food Initiative, which includes 1) creation of an updated local food system plan that centers community knowledge and needs, and 2) refinements to the existing Regional Food Systems Program.

Project Background
New Venture Advisors LLC (NVA) is a strategy consulting firm specializing in food system planning and food enterprise development. Our clients share our commitment to environmental sustainability, social impact, equity, diversity, and inclusion as we help them realize their vision for a more just and sustainable food system.

NVA has assisted dozens of governments and councils in understanding the challenges and opportunities in their food system through data-rich food system assessments and community-driven planning. We excel at working with communities to develop effective policy recommendations and action plans to make food systems more resilient, equitable, and economically viable.

In January 2024, NVA was hired by King County and the King Conservation District to support the creation of a community food system plan throughout 2024 and early 2025. King County and King Conservation District are embarking on a refresh of the Local Food Initiative, a regional strategy to grow the local food economy and increase access to healthy foods in low-income communities, and the Regional Food Systems Program directing funding, technical assistance, and education to support the Initiative.

Published in 2015, the Local Food Initiative (LFI) has served as a roadmap for food policy and action for stakeholders across the region and been the driving force behind many innovative programs and projects. Many projects developed in response to the LFI have been funded through the Regional Food Systems Program. The refresh of the LFI presents an opportunity to build off past successes, learn from gaps and challenges, incorporate new policy and research, emphasize equity and climate change, and integrate new voices and communities into the conversation.

To support the Local Food Initiative update, NVA is seeking a locally-based community engagement organization (or a coordinated group of organizations) to be our partner(s) in involving the diverse communities of King County throughout the planning process.

NVA will support this group, including providing technical assistance and advising, but the organization(s) will be responsible for on-the-ground activities and cultivating the meaningful community participation, reciprocal relationships, and knowledge sharing that King County, King Conservation District, and NVA seek with communities across King County.

Community-Based Organization Characteristics
We’re looking to partner with organization(s) that:

  • Are located in AND provide services within King County, WA.
  • Are available to codesign a community engagement plan and lead community engagement between April – November 2024 and support a public comment period between January – February 2025.
  • Have strong connections and relationships across King County communities, including producers, farmworkers, food service workers, those who primarily speak languages other than English, and those with lower median incomes.
  • Can clearly articulate the goals of community engagement and how community voices, expertise, and experiences will support the development of the food plan.
  • Have a track record of conducting outreach and/or representing communities in King County, especially with food system stakeholders – from farmers to eaters to organizations that support more equitable food systems.
  • Are able to implement a community engagement process that is co-designed with community members, responsive to their needs, and empowering rather than extractive.
  • Are committed to accountability in community engagement, including debriefing with communities so that they know how their knowledge will be utilized and how the plan will reflect their needs.
  • Are able to adapt to a fast-moving project and new insights and lessons learned as we move through the process.
  • Have access to translation and interpretation services for at least 2-4 (and ideally more) of the primary languages spoken in King County.
  • Are able to implement the scope of work detailed below.

Scope of Work:

Community-based organizations that partner with NVA will be responsible for working with NVA, King County and King Conservation District staff to implement a community-wide engagement strategy to inform the food system planning process. The community-based organization is expected to provide an average of approximately 5-6 hours per week of paid support to this project, over a 9-10 month period. In particular, the community-based organization will: Meet regularly with NVA and King County and the King Conservation District project team. Collaborate with NVA to co-design the public engagement process, creating an overall strategy and specific tools, research instruments, and engagement opportunities. Generate interest in the project across the county’s diverse communities. Plan community engagement events and outreach materials for diverse audiences. Utilize a variety of culturally tailored outreach and engagement methods, including providing translation services, stipends, and communications. Implement community engagement events and compile the notes and other qualitative data generated by these events. Facilitate public comment on plan content drafts.

Solicitation documents: Solicitation documents, contacts and bid instructions are available in WEBS: https://pr-webs-customer.des.wa.gov/

Point of Contact 

Name: Eileen Horn
Phone: (913) 708-3929
Organization: New Venture Advisors LLC

Pre Bid Meeting Details:

Virtual Informational Session

March 27th at 10 am Pacific Time


Zoom link:

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/88176683733?pwd=SmpMNFQxSTVlM1Yxdk9EZ2ZrblFCUT09

Meeting ID: 881 7668 3733;

Passcode: 610887

Other Details:

Budget Available
NVA will work with the selected organization(s) to design the scope of work to fit the project budget including materials, interpretation and translation, travel expenses, stipends for participants, and compensation for the team. The projected budget is $50,000-$70,000. The actual final budget will depend upon the work plan that is co-developed between the selected organization and New Venture Advisors.

Response Format
To respond to this RFQ, please submit a response to the following questions. Please email your response to eileen@newventureadvisors.net by 5 pm on April 12, 2024.
Please limit your response to 4 pages.

Tell us about your organization:

  • How long have you been serving King County?
  • What is your organization’s mission?
  • What audiences do you serve?
  • Please briefly describe examples of your existing connections with food system stakeholders.

Tell us about your approach to community engagement:

  • How will you work with NVA, King County, King Conservation District, and local communities to plan and implement a community engagement process that is adaptable, responsive, equitable, empowering, effective, and transparent?

Tell us about your previous community engagement experience:

  • Have you implemented a process like this in the past?
    • If so, describe how you identified and reached the audiences that were important to the goals of the project.

Tell us about your team and your capacity:

This project will take place April – November 2024, and will require significant staff time resources to carry out.

  • Tell us about your team members who would be on this project and how much time they have available to work with us.
    • If you are submitting a response on behalf of multiple organizations, please include a description of how your organizations will coordinate your efforts.

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