Starting in summer, Fresh Food Markets are being hosted weekly at three Cook County Health (CCH) health centers in South Suburban Cook County.

Black Oaks Center, a local nonprofit, is partnering with CCH to make fresh fruits and vegetables available for sale at Oak Forest Health Center, Robbins Health Center and Cottage Grove Health Center.

Cash, credit, and Link cards (SNAP/EBT/food stamps) are accepted as forms of payment. Persons using their SNAP/Link card benefits to purchase will receive a Link Match Coupon, as part of the Link Up Illinois program, good towards the next purchase of fruits and/or vegetables.

If you have Medicaid or receive a medical card, you may be eligible for SNAP. Our partners at the Greater Chicago Food Depository can assist with SNAP applications. Visit their website or call 773-843-5416 to reach their Benefits Outreach team.

The Fresh Food Markets are part of an ongoing effort to address issues of food insecurity among CCH patients, as CCH recognizes that healthy food is the No. 1 way to promote good health.

It’s estimated that one in seven Cook County residents experience food insecurity each year, meaning they’re not quite sure where or when their next meal will be coming from.

“Food is medicine,” said Dr. John Jay Shannon, CEO of CCH.  “By connecting our patients with reliable sources of food we can better care for their health and mitigate avoidable health consequences associated with hunger and poor nutrition.”

The Daily Southtown ran an article on the new markets here.

In addition to the Fresh Food Markets, CCH has also partnered with the Greater Chicago Food Depository to host Fresh Trucks at its health centers for CCH patients.  And during summer, CCH makes free healthy meals available for children who are 18 and younger at three of its locations.  More information about these programs is available at our Healthy Living site.