Care-A-Van is a food-focused program that provides a variety of resources to those in need while fostering excitement over fresh, local foods. Care-A-Van provides nutrition education, arts and crafts, books, music, health screenings, food demonstrations, community resources, and much more at the events we partner with. We bring our Care-A-Van events to a variety of community settings such as farmers markets, community potlucks, arts festivals, and school events.

Care-A-Van is being offered the 2nd Saturday, May-October 10am-1pm at the Coit Road Farmers Market.

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Care Strong Project

Care Strong Project events focus on offering free health screenings, education, and information to those who are less fortunate. Screenings are made possible by our partners: University Hospitals Department of Family Medicine and the Case Western Reserve University Physician Assistant Program. Every person screened received coupons to spend on fresh produce at the nearby Coit Road Farmers Market.

Throughout the year, we are making monthly visits to the Salvation Army in East Cleveland to provide them with these resources, as well as the Zelma George Shelter Downtown (not open to public). Additionally, these free health screenings are offered during Care-A-Van events once a month May-October.

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Learning Gardens

In 2016, Food Strong Founder Sara Continenza began to work closely with the Cleveland Metropolitan School District to build a School Garden toolkit and curriculum based on Ohio's Learning Standards. Food Strong has since guided students at over a dozen public schools through the design, planting, maintenance and harvest of onsite fresh food and flower gardens. A large emphasis is placed on STEM learning, entrepreneurship, environmentalism, art and community development. We have also partnered with local artists to guide our students through the design and creation of food focused murals to spread awareness while beautifying our communities. The mural project is funded by Cuyahoga Arts and Culture.


Food Strong also operates a Learning Garden at the urban farm at the Coit Road Farmers Market which serves as an onsite location where various educational programs can be hosted. The Learning Garden was our response to the pandemic and consequent school closures, giving us the opportunity to bring together small groups of learners in a safe, outdoor environment. Our students regularly practice selling their produce at farmers markets in order to gain business skills. We continue to expand our entrepreneurship programming. During the summer of 2022, we are partnering with Central State University Extension to offer our Junior Market Garden Club every Saturday through August. Register here for this free program.


Please contact us if you are interested in bringing a garden program to your school or facility, or if you would like to organize a field trip for your students to our Learning Garden.




learn more about our gardens & murals

Culinary Arts Classes

Food Strong is available to provide your organization affordable, healthy cooking classes. We create interactive learning experiences for a variety of learners, targeted specifically to the needs and goals of the population served. We also bring these classes to our schools where we teach students how to cook healthy meals from scratch using items that we pick from the garden. Let's make nutritious eating delicious and FUN!

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Volunteer Cleanups at the Market

Food Strong organizes regular cleanup events at the Coit Road Farmers Market where volunteers can get involved in helping to beautify the space and work on our Learning Garden. We serve refreshments and always have PPE ready for anyone who needs it. Click on our Calendar for dates, and visit our Facebook event page for more information. Sign up to volunteer here.



learn more about our gardens & murals

Farmers' Markets

Food Strong works very closely to support, enhance, and even initiate farmers' markets. Food Strong brings a variety of programs and support to the Coit Road Farmers' Market (located at 15000 Woodworth Rd., East Cleveland from 8am-1pm on Saturdays, year round, and on Wednesdays from June-October).


We have also launched the Hillcrest-Heights Community Market in partnership with the City of South Euclid and the City of Cleveland Heights (held Quarry Park-North in South Euclid on Thursdays from 4-8pm). This market is a great opportunity for us to support fresh food access while offering our youth exposure to a variety of entrepreneurial settings in which they can practice their workforce development skills.

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learn more about our gardens & murals

Fresh Food Connect

We are proud to partner with Denver based Fresh Food Connect. This app is designed to connect home gardeners with local hunger relief organizations. We provide a platform for gardeners to donate their excess food, and serve as a liaison between those gardeners and hungry people in the city. We will use the donated produce in our school culinary programs where we teach students how to cook from scratch and introduce them to what a healthy, balanced diet looks like. We will also set up free grocery tables within food deserts to get fresh food to people who need it. Many gardeners put in an extra row specifically to donate. We are glad to facilitate local food production as a regional trend.

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