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Garden Gleaning in 2012

November 9, 2012

Working with just two food shelves last year—Little Kitchen Food Shelf in Northeast Minneapolis and Waite House in South Minneapolis—the Garden Gleaning Project helped facilitate the collection of 7,334 pounds of produce.  This year, we were excited to have the opportunity to expand our efforts to three new areas in Hennepin County: Community Emergency Assistance Program (CEAP) in Brooklyn Park/Brooklyn Center, St. Louis Park Emergency Program (STEP), and CAPI (a non-geographically based non-profit that serves Southeast Asian community members).

We supported each of our food shelf partners with a Neighborhood Coordinator who was a liaison between them and nearby vegetable growers.  We set out to build relationships between food shelves and gardeners with hopes of bringing about mutual understanding, community, and support for healthy food access.  I think we did just that.  After a summer of outreach and a autumn of harvesting,  I am happy to report that in 2012 we were able to support our five food shelf partners with over 15,000 pounds of fresh produce.

“This was an amazing and positive experience.  The generosity of gardeners and the community was beautiful to watch in action.  I am thankful for getting to be a part of it.”
-Copper Harding, Garden Gleaning Project Neighborhood Coordinator, Little Kitchen Food Shelf.

I can’t thank our donors enough.  It is the backyard farmers, community gardeners, and local farmers who made this possible.  They planted and cared for vegetable plants with the intent of donating them as a way to support the well-being of their neighbors.   And when when harvests were abundant, they kept us in mind.  No one understands and values the importance of fresh vegetables as part of healthy diet more than they do!

With winter approaching, we now look to encourage growers to follow the example set out by those who contributed in 2012.  Plan ahead!  Plant an extra row if you can!

Humbled by generosity,

Jared

The Garden Gleaning Project is a collaborative effort of Emergency Foodshelf Network, Gardening Matters, Hennepin County Human Services and Public Health Department, The Minnesota Project, Minnesota FoodShare, and Waite House and The Little Kitchen food shelves.  For 2012, it is partially funded through Hennepin County Human Services and Public Health Department, which has received funding from Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota as part of Prevention Minnesota, Blue Cross’ long-term health improvement initiative that works to tackle the root causes of preventable heart disease and cancer.

 

 

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