A Healthy Corner Store Initiative (HCSI) is a model for increasing the availability of healthy food in corner stores by identifying a continuum of readiness for store changes and working with small food retailers to increase access to healthy foods. A small food retailer refers to a small-scale retail food outlet other than a grocery store, as defined. It includes but is not limited to, a corner store, convenience store, mobile food market, and a retail food outlet operated by an emergency food program or food hub. Read about the Wichita HCSI Pilot Program design by New Venture Advisors and The Food Trust below.
In July 2021, the closure of Save A Lot near 13th and Grove as well as other recent closures of full-service grocery stores in other Wichita neighborhoods, exacerbated challenges many residents have accessing healthy foods. Additionally, COVID-19 increased hunger and hardship that already persisted and caused further issues due to a lack of transportation, increased unemployment and increasing barriers to food assistance programs for some people. Food insecurity is linked to many chronic diseases and impacts health outcomes and health disparities, especially in communities that are low-income, lack access to grocery, and have low vehicle access.
In July 2022, the City Council allocated $1,000,000 in American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds to support the creation of a Healthy Corner Store Initiative (HCSI) Pilot Program to collaborate with existing small food retailers to incentivize and enable them to stock fresh, healthy food options. Funding supported the design of a community-driven 2023 Pilot Program Implementation Plan for a Wichita Healthy Corner Store Initiative informed by stakeholder feedback gathered during the City of Wichita/Sedgwick County Food System Master Plan (2020-2022) and the best practices presented in the Healthy Food Access and Grocery Proposal Analysis (2021).
As a result, the City of Wichita is soliciting a Request for Proposals (RFP) to qualified For-profit Firm(s), Nonprofit Organization(s), Education Institution(s), and/or Government Agencies to administer a Healthy Corner Store Initiative Pilot Program in the City of Wichita within
Qualified Census Tracts and where a significant number of residents are far from a supermarket or grocery store. Please reference priority census tracts here: Wichita HCSI Project Map.
The Wichita Healthy Corner Store Initiative Pilot Program aims to bring expertise and resources together to improve food access in underserved communities and build relationships with small food retailers through training and education to store owners willing to sell and market healthy products and believe these changes can be sustainable and profitable.
September 2022 - February 2023
- HCSI Program Design and Stakeholder Engagement
March - April 2023
- Development of Draft HCSI Request for Proposal (RFP)
May 5, 2023
HCSI RFP Workshops
- May 17, 2023
- June 6, 2023
- Wednesday, 5/17 and Tuesday, 6/6 at 10:30 AM at the Advanced Learning Library, 711 West 2nd St N Wichita, KS 67203
July 12, 2023
July 19, 2023
- Last day for written questions, addendum released July 28, 2023.
August 4, 2023
HCSI PROPOSALS DUE
- The City encourages respondents to leverage resources by coordinating services with other community-based organizations and speak to how your organization collaborates with other nonprofit and community organizations in the Wichita area and embraces innovation.
August - September 2023
September - October 2023
- City Council Approval for HCSI Program Implementation
If you are interested in collaborating with the City to increase access to healthy food in Wichita or would like more information, please provide your contact information to
If you are interested in participating, the following processes can be started:
Vendor Registration: Register using commodity code 91852
Emerging Business Enterprise Certification
System Award Management Registration