- Associated Press - Thursday, September 29, 2016

LEWISTON, Maine (AP) - The United States Department of Agriculture is committing nearly $400,000 to increase food access for the Somali community in Lewiston.

Members of the Somali Bantu community in the city are partnering with the Cumberland County Food Security Council on the project. The funding is expected to support Somalis’ agriculture and help them reconnect with their cultural heritage.

The USDA says the objectives of the project include building the capacity of the Somali Bantu community and its farmers to produce food and address the problem of limited food access. The agency describes the Somali Bantu community as the poorest community in the city, which is the second largest city in the state.

Cumberland County Food Security Council will recruit people in the community to help increase access to healthy food.

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