Help the Hungry with the Giving Gardens Network

If you’re a gardener, chances are you will have some extra produce this summer—or might even be willing to plant a little extra. Those efforts could go a long way to helping feed folks for whom food is scarce—and this year, there is even more need than usual. The recession means that more families are experiencing food shortages, and food banks and assistance agencies are finding their resources are also required to stretch further and further.

Though lots of people know how to grow fresh food and are willing to share, in the past, it’s been hard to figure out how to get that food to people who need it. Most of us thought that food pantries could not accept fresh food. As it turns out, that isn’t always true! Many pantries  do take fresh veggies and other perishable items. And thanks to a new initiative called the Giving Gardens Network, it’s easier than ever to find them.

A volunteer-driven cooperative campaign set up with the help of several partner organizations,  the Giving Gardens Network is described as “a network of home gardeners, farmers and organizations that are working to encourage and support the donation of fresh food, grown locally in New Hampshire, to food pantries and shelters. By planning to raise a little extra … by growing the foods that are most needed … and by donating to locations that can accept fresh foods…we can help reduce hunger in New Hampshire.”

Using the Giving Gardens Network website, you can plan, grow, and donate your food to any one of the Seacoast food pantries that accept fresh food. And you can also keep track of statewide efforts to help feed the hungry using food grown right here at home.

Now that’s helping your neighbor.