Rally for Change

Anytime you check-out at City Market, you can choose to "round up" your total to the nearest dollar. Each month, that spare change is donated to three great non-profits that align with the Co-op's mission. 

Rally for Change50% Partner (every month):

Chittenden Emergency Food Shelf


July's 40% Partner:

Vermont Fresh Network and Open Farm Week

Open Farm Week is an opportunity for Vermont farms to spotlight their business and showcase their products.  By holding a weeklong event, it lets farmers choose the time and type of event that works best for them. Farms may feature tours, workshops, draft animal demos, tastings, scavenger hunts, or on-farm dinners. VFN provide road signs, posters, flyers and marketing best practices to the farms to help them promote their event alongside our dedicated communications team. 

The first Open Farm Week was held in 2015, and had over 80 farms host 240 agricultural events in one week in August! After the event, participating farmers were surveyed, 93% of the responding participants wanted us to organize OFW again in 2016; 87% of responding farms said OFW was helpful in attracting new customers; 67% said it was helpful to increasing their sales; and 91% said it was helpful for educating customers about farms and food. 

The strength in this event draws from the reach and commitment of the diverse team that includes the premiere sponsors City Market/Onion River Coop and the Vermont Department of Tourism and Marketing; NOFA-VT; Vermont Farmers Market Association; University of Vermont Extension; Farm to Plate Network; Vermont Farm Tours; Vermont Fresh Network; DigInVT; Shelburne Farms and the Farm-Based Education Network and the Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food and Markets.

You can find all the schedules and event listings for Vermont Open Farm Week on www.DigInVt.com.

The Vermont Fresh Network’s vision is to build a flourishing Vermont food and farm economy. Our mission is to advance relationships among farmers, chefs, and consumers to grow markets and eat more locally grown food. Alongside our various programs as Vermont Fresh Network, we also operate the website www.DigInVT.com. DigInVT is a portal to the state’s agriculture and culinary experiences – connecting consumers with the people and places that make Vermont an exciting and delicious destination.


July's 10% Partner:

Vermont Business for Social Responsibility

At Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility (VBSR), their mission is to foster a business ethic in Vermont that recognizes the opportunity and responsibility of the business community to set a high standard for protecting the natural, human, and economic environments of our citizens. With the support of 750+ members, VBSR’s Research & Education Foundation (VBSR-REF) works to advance this mission through research and education on socially responsible business practices. 

Each year, VBSR-REF hosts the largest gathering of socially responsible leaders in the state, bringing together more than 300 businesspeople to their Spring Conference, where they learn techniques and topics that help them manage the “triple-bottom-line” approach to business. Their monthly networking events also highlight tips and strategies for operating a socially responsible organization. And each year the foundation recognizes the accomplishments of a key Vermont businessperson with The Terry Ehrich Award for Excellence in Socially Responsible Business. 

In short, VBSR-REF helps organizations do business differently, recognizing that the way we treat people and our planet are equally as important as making a profit.


About Rally for Change

In October 2014, City Market updated its program for collecting donations at the register! Previously, we selected a different non-profit each month and donated 5 cents for each bag our customers reused (our "Change for Local Non-Profits" program). Every register also included tear off coupons so customers could donate to the Chittenden Emergency Food Shelf. In addition, each year in February we sold $1 Hearts for the Intervale Center and in September $1 Lunch Trays for Hunger Free Vermont, with all donations going to each respective organization. We've consolidated all of these programs into our new "Rally for Change" program which allows customers to "round up" their order at each register, each time they check-out at the Co-op.

In the name of education, opportunity, and streamlining how we do things here at the Co-op, we created a Rally for Change program! This program allows customers to “round up” their payment at the register (e.g., a $25.42 checkout could be rounded up to $26 for a $0.58 donation). The Co-op will then donate this “round up” change to a variety of local non-profits each month (so, not just one!) that are doing amazing work in our community. Want to round up to the nearest five or ten dollars? You can do that too! Each month, we’ll share who will be receiving the donations (in our newsletter, with store signage and through staff education).

With more than 4,000 transactions each day through our registers, we all have the opportunity to share what we think of as “small change” to rally for bigger community-wide change. This new Rally program will take the place of the “tear off” coupons we have at the registers and will also take the place of our Change for Local Non-Profits (or bag refunds) program.

Not to worry, a large percentage of each month’s donation will go to the Chittenden Emergency Food Shelf and we anticipate that this program will actually increase their donations. Through this new program, we will also continue to offer donations to local non-profits that are on the waiting list for our previous "Change for Local Non-Profits" bag refund program (and any new ones that we add to the list!). Here’s how the donation percentages will work out each month:

  • 50% to the Chittenden Emergency Food Shelf, every month

  • 40% to an organization that aligns with the Co-op’s Global Ends

  • 10% to a local non-profit that may not directly align so closely with our Global Ends, but still works to make our community a better place (much like the Change for Local Non-Profits Program)

This new program gives our cashiers and staff an opportunity to engage with our customers and together we’ll both support and learn more about the organizations that make our community a better place to live. We’re excited to give it a try and are interested to hear what you think!

Past Recipients

Do you run a local non-profit that aligns with our Global Ends?

Your organization can apply to become a Rally for Change 10% Partner. We are currently filling slots 2 years out (it's a popular program and our community has many amazing non-profits!). Visit our donations page to learn how to apply.