Unloading boxes of produce from UD's Garden for the Community.

Harvest to home

Garden for the Community supplies Food Bank of Delaware


3:16 p.m., July 13, 2011--Volunteers spent the morning of Tuesday, July 12, harvesting a cornucopia of fresh peppers, eggplant, squash, cucumbers, tomatillos and more from the University of Delaware’s Garden for the Community. Once they finished harvesting, a Food Bank of Delaware mobile pantry truck was loaded and headed to Sparrow Run Park in Bear where volunteers distributed fresh produce, 30-pound meal boxes, chicken, fresh bread and other food items to 387 individuals.

“Working with the food bank's mobile pantry allows our volunteers to experience the result of their hard work in the garden and connect with the community," said Tom Sims, deputy dean of UD's College of Agriculture and Natural Resources (CANR). "Our students not only gain valuable lessons in what it takes to produce food, they start on a path of service."

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“We are incredibly fortunate to have a steady stream of fresh, locally-grown produce from the University of Delaware’s Garden for the Community,” said Patricia Beebe, Food Bank of Delaware president and CEO. “Because of the garden and other local partners we are able to provide families with healthy foods that they otherwise may not be able to afford.”

Renee Connor, a UD student and intern for the Garden for the Community, said that contributing fresh produce to the food bank’s mobile pantry is important because it provides those in need with healthy foods. “Obviously feeding people in need is an important part, but it’s also important to give families healthier food, like fresh-picked produce. We’re giving them basil, peppers, eggplant, okra, squash, zucchini and tomatoes,” she said. “The partnership is a good way for people in the community to get involved and do something helpful for people who are in need of assistance.”

Through the food bank’s mobile pantry program, a food bank truck travels to an underserved area during hours when clients find it easier to receive assistance. Thirty-pound meal boxes filled with enough nutritious food to feed four people for up to five meals are distributed. 

Evening in the Garden Aug. 11

To celebrate the bounty of the Garden for the Community, the Food Bank of Delaware and UD will hold the third annual Evening in the Garden event on Thursday, Aug. 11, from 6-8 p.m. The event will be held outside the garden. Tickets are $40 per person and the price includes dinner, wine and entertainment. For more information or to attend the event, visit the Food Bank of Delaware website.

Photos by Anna McDermott

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