Archive for the ‘Hunger’ Category

During this time of bounty and celebration, it is important to remember that many of our neighbors are now among the 14 percent of residents in Berkeley, Charleston, and Dorchester counties depending on food assistance programs.

Fields to Families is a nonprofit organization that helps increase nutrition to the area hungry by coordinating the distribution of fresh produce obtained from local gardens, farms, and farmers markets. Facing an increased demand for food assistance, nonprofit organizations rely on Fields to Families to provide fresh fruits and vegetables to feed the hungry. In 2009, with your help, we gathered and donated more than 80,000 pounds of fresh, local produce to those in need and we continue to grow in 2010.

Please give today to help feed the hungry.
Your gift will be used to support our gleaning efforts, which make up the bulk of the produce that we are able to provide for FREE to the 20 nonprofit organizations we serve, including East Cooper Meals on Wheels, Helping Hands of Goose Creek, and Star Gospel Mission. These are nonprofits that many seniors, families and individuals rely on as a vital source of nutrition and sustenance. And, it is provided in a safe environment with a personal touch along with various other services.

What is gleaning?
Gleaning dates back to Biblical times and is considered one of the first forms of welfare. Farmers would leave a little extra of their crops in the field after the harvest for the hungry. With the help of our farm partners and 600 volunteers, we are actively gleaning throughout the Lowcountry, providing fresh food that may have otherwise gone to waste to those who need it most. Just last month, we gleaned thousands of pounds of turnips, kale, collards, mustards, eggplant, beans, rutabega, and cabbage that were delivered to local nonprofits who serve hundreds of people in need.

Fields to Families relies on your donations.

  • A donation of $25 can help coordinate a gleaning or farmers market pickup and delivery that results in hundreds of pounds of produce.
  • A donation of $50 can provide water that gives life to our gardens.
  • A donation of $100 is enough to supply materials for a garden bed in one of our Fields to Families’ gardens that will produce food throughout the year.

When you donate to Fields to Families, you can be confident that your donation will make a difference. We were recently honored by the South Carolina Secretary of State as one of 10 “Angel” charities in South Carolina that puts donors’ money to good use and makes good use of volunteers.

We have all felt the pangs of hunger in between meals. But without the support from people like you, many of our neighbors will go to bed and wake up hungry.

Every gift helps! Please consider donating what you are able to in support of Fields to Families’ mission of easing hunger in the Lowcountry.

Thank you for your support!


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photo by Helen Hammond

I must thank Helen Hammond for her serendipitous timing. She called on such a perfect day that I had Jim Richmond on his way to drop off 6,500 lbs of watermelon. In case you didn’t see the article in the Moultrie News, it can be found here.

The Richmond family has been so gracious to make these Charleston Greys available to us and our agencies. This week they have even more, except we need your help to pick them and deliver them! The Richmond’s farm is located at 2620 Harris Town Rd, St. Stephen 29479. We would be welcome to glean Thursday, July 22. Gleaning to commence around 9:00 am.

I would suggest bringing a wagon (from field to vehicle), if you’re able to deliver to some agencies. On your way into town. If you would like to just glean, then I can see if any of our agencies are able to pick-up on-site. The melons are between 8-12 lbs, so they’ll wear on you as time passes. Don’t feel pressured to stay long, just harvest what you are able to. We could use the help to deliver these afterwards. Email christina [at] fieldstofamilies [dot] org, if you can help. Keep in mind that watermelons grow on the vine so you may want to pack a box cutter, long sleeves, a hat, and maybe some gloves. Stay hydrated, pack ice water!

We are so grateful for the support and commitment to service each and every one of you give. It’s truly a blessing to see how much of an impact we render in our community.

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On behalf of Fields to Families, we are so fortunate to have some of the best, hardworking volunteers in the Lowcountry. Among those that glean and are recipients for their community is Take It To The Streets Ministry. One thing that I have learned about gleaning is how to be flexible. Many of our volunteers let me know when they are available, but we have to keep in mind that the farmers are making the most of their opportunities to sell what they have. Usually in the 11th hour we receive a phone call or an invitation to glean.

This was the case last week, when Walter Earley from Hickory Bluff Nursery and Berry Farm made his strawberries available to Fields to Families. However, I am convinced it was Divine Intervention, I had a chance meeting with Take It To The Streets at the Blackbaud Volunteer Fair. I connected them with a fast-approaching glean date and they were able to meet the needs for their own community, while pairing us with a Georgia mission group.

Connor and Jesse are tremendous leaders for TI2TS and among the families they serve and touch on a daily basis. You have to visit their blog because it’s truly a touching story. Everything fell into place and much of the work was accomplished before the rain. You can not always plan for the best of situations, but must always be flexible with what you have got. The first day back from Memorial Day weekend was a huge feat to overcome, but with TI2TS it went off without a hitch!

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The Outreach Committee met yesterday to map out a plan to fight Childhood Obesity.  They are planning activities for children five to twelve years old. 

They plan to use various methods of reaching children of all backgrounds with varying meaningful themes and techniques    Their main theme is ‘Happiness is Healthiness’ .  The committe will collaborate with local agency to address the critical issue of childhood obesity.

The next meeting is April 11th at 5 PM.  Caitlin Jones is chairing this committee.  Please contact info@fieldstofamilies.org if you are interested in joining this group or want more information.

Volunteer opportunities this week:
The Contentment Springs Team will be notified by email regarding the next work date.  If you would like to be placed on a list for either the Contentment Springs (Johns Island) work team or the Whole Foods/Fields to Families  (Moncks Corner) team, please let me know at info@fieldstofamilies.org

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  What a beautiful weekend!  Several members of our Contentment Springs Team spent Saturday morning clearing the beds in our garden  on Johns Island.  Before long, we will be doing the same at our WHole Foods/Fields to Families garden in Moncks Corner.  Amelia Scott in the photo is an ‘experienced’ volunteer who has gleaned since last spring and now is working the land at Contentment Springs. She was recently awarded a Fields to Families tee shirt for more than 40 hours of volunteer service.
While you are enjoying the fresh air, sunshine, and exercise, you are preparing to grow the vegetables that will feed many hungry people.  We need your help.  When you join one or both of our teams, you participate when you can and you are not obligated to come to every work session.  As a member of the team, you receive information on the progress of the garden and about all the opportunities to participate.  You will also receive on the site training from Clemson Extension Service Master Gardeners. Join a team and have fun while you learn.  Sign up to volunteer at www.fieldstofamilies.org/signup
We have no work session or other activities planned for next weekend, so please support our effort by dining at the Mustard Seed, Boulevard Diner, Long Point Grill, Uno Mas, Sette or the Village Bakery where Fields to Families is spotlighted in the month of March.

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Are you a Hunger Hero?  You can be one by dining at the Mustard Seed, The Boulevard Diner,  Sette, Uno Mas, Long Point Grill or the Village Bakery Cafe.  Dine in one of the above nine restaurants and you will have an opportunity to be a Hunger Hero.  Come out and support our efforts.  Sal and Andrea Parco of the “Dine with Sal” restaurants are supporting our effort to feed the hungry by encouraging patrons to donate money or services to support our garden projects and increase the number of vegetables we are able to distribute to the hungry.  Please be a part of this month long project.

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Now that our gleaning opportunities are over, Fields to Families will be preparing our own two gardens for spring planting.  We need your help.  The Whole Foods/Fields to Families Garden is located on Crestwood Drive in Moncks Corner.  Contentment Springs Garden is located on Mary Ann Point Road on Johns Island.  Both sites will need your help.  You do not need to be an experienced vegetable gardener.  We will be supported by the Clemson Master Gardeners!  They will be available to instruct you on all aspects of gardening.  Registered Fields to Families Volunteers will be contacted by email and receive notification of work days.  Please join us as we launch our latest project to increase our productivity to meet the needs of the ever increasing number of people in need of fresh nutritious food.  Register at www.fieldstofamilies.org/signup

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