Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Harvest Hope, Harvest Health, Harvest a Hero

The other day I was visiting the Friends Of The Garden Forum and I began a discussion on local CSA's, Co-ops and ways to help needy families with acquiring fresh produce at little or no cost.  I was directed by a member of the forum to another website called The Well Fed Neighbor Alliance, which sounded like exactly what I was thinking.  But I was unable to find a program that was exactly what I was thinking about.

Back in high school I attended a field trip here in Springfield to Ozarks Food Harvest, which used to be located at Chestnut and Glenstone.  I called this morning to inquire about the program that I saw on that visit that allowed the people to have their own square foot garden for fresh produce. The families worked the plots and planted veggies and harvested all they needed from the plot in exchange for their time and effort and willingness to do the work.  Unfortunately they no longer are able to provide this program because of space and lot limitations.  I was informed that their new space is nearly all parking lot, which was so sad to hear.  I really was interested in volunteering for that program and helping to teach those in need how to grow their own health produce, and sustain their viability, and plant a future generation of gardeners.  It is hard enough to accept donations and these folks have to swallow their pride for the sake of their families just to get a decent meal, I think it is so reassuring to allow them to help themselves, and feel that they are making a difference in their situations.
So the alternative to the program is in association with "plant a row for the hungry". They call it; "ozarks harvesting hope" And you can donate your surplus fresh food this season and help families in need.  I urge you, if you are able to find ways to help those around us in our community.  At some time or other in our lives, we find that we needed some assistance, and I feel it is a great thanks to return the good deeds by helping others when you can.  We are in hard economic times and many are hit harder than ourselves, no matter how rough it is for you, someone else is needing help more, and you can give it to them, if you make a point to find ways to.
If I am unable to produce enough veggies to share with the Food Pantry, I would at least, like to donate some time and effort to their cause.  I am not rich, and have no monetary contributions to make, but I have time, and knowledge that I am more than willing to share, in return for a feeling that I helped, and nothing more.
I will continue to look for other local programs in this topic, and add them as I can.  If you have any suggestions, links or resources to help, please feel free to comment or contact me.

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