|The Garden's Bounty
First of all, while our guiding purpose is to feed "those in need", in the last two seasons we grew 3,500 and 4,500 pounds of food (those figures included both the volunteers and the surplus donated to the Food Bank, the Senior Lunch Program and others.) One of our greatest challenges has been, as the Food Bank was closing up each week, was to find people to take home all the fresh produce that was still left over! Growing food in the style of sharing creates tremendous abundance and "rising waters lift all ships." Even if you or your family is not in dire financial circumstances, you are still welcome to participate in the growing of food and sharing in the bounty. There is plenty to go around!
Secondly, there are many less-material benefits to those who volunteer in the gardens that go beyond the amount of food you would be able to take home with you in harvest times. Getting your hands in the soil, moving your body as you prepare the ground, pulling weeds and harvesting--all contribute to your physical health and well-being. Sharing in conversation, meeting the other volunteers and making new connections is good for you emotionally. Learning how to grow your own food organically and having stimulating conversations about the current world-situation while pulling weeds or picking beans, is good for your mind. And stepping into active service; giving without a specific calculation of what you'll get in return is just plain good for the soul!
|Conversation in the bean-patch.