Hope grows for local foodbanks thanks to modest volunteers

Secret garden donated 1,100 pounds of vegetables produced last year

A garden powered by goodwill and green thumbs has donated more than 1,000 pounds of fresh produce to the hungry.

HOPE garden, which stands for Helping Other People Eat, is the idea that Maye Cann pitched to St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church two years ago. The idea took root and since then, Cann has watered, weeded, harvested and hauled the vegetables grown in the garden to the Second Harvest Food Bank.

Read more: In photos: Garden starter

Read more: Koi fish return to Chinese garden, 6 months since ‘otterpocalypse’

Janet Hanna, a long time friend of Cann, is acutely aware of her friend’s modesty but wanted to highlight her efforts all the same.

“It was Maye’s idea and she does a lot of the work and she doesn’t like blowing her own horn at all, but all the produce goes to second harvest and that is such a need of the community,” Hanna said.

The garden grows potatoes, carrots, beets, onions and other long lasting root vegetables that are household staples. Last year the garden netted 1,100 pounds of fresh produce and, after an expansion was made this year, volunteers are hoping to produce between 1,400 and 1,500 pounds of vegetables for donation.

Ena van Zoeren, the minister at St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church, notes the garden is helping to solve a challenge commonly faced by food banks.

“They get a lot of things like canned goods and things like Kraft Dinner, baked beans,” said Zoeren. “They don’t often accept fresh produce but if you grow your own and bring it in they will gladly take it.”

The location of the HOPE garden remains a secret as St. Andrew’s has been victim to several burglaries. A less well-kept secret, however, is another waste food redistribution organization, The North Okanagan Valley Gleaners Society, where she volunteers every Thursday.

Read more: Garden party supports Mamas for Mamas

Read more: Okanagan micro-garden proposed to provide wineries with fresh vegetables

Zoeren also knows of Maye Cann’s modesty, acknowledging that Cann did plant the seed for the project but the garden has become something bigger for the church.

“It’s a big part of who St. Andrew’s is to reach out into the community, and we really can’t think of a much better way to do this than by feeding the people that are hungry,” Zoeren said.

Although the HOPE garden is working to provide more people with fresh produce, Zoeren would like to see the entire town work for the same cause.

“If you’re interested in this ministry and you have your own garden, why not plant an extra row of carrots or an extra row of potatoes for the food bank,” she said.


@SalmonArm
newsroom@saobserver.net

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Strong thunderstorms expected for Shuswap, Okanagan this weekend

Environment Canada meterologist also warns of heavy wind, rain and a potential for flooding

Increase in Shuswap bear sightings prompts reminder about attractants

Animal-resistant trash bins not sufficient to keep bears out warns Conservation Officer Service

Chef brings farm-to-table approach to new Salmon Arm restaurant

Darren Bezanson opening Bistro 1460 at Hilltop Inn

Gas prices rising across the Okanagan, Shuswap

Prices at some gas stations in the Okanagan sit around 115 cents a litre

Salmon Arm RCMP will be patrolling school zones on June 1 when some students return

Police remind drivers fines for speeding in a school zone start at $196 and range up to $483

Only four new COVID-19 cases, 228 active across B.C.

Health officials watching as activities ramp up

Parts of the TCT through Princeton will open to motorized vehicles Monday

Parts of the KVR trail through Princeton will open for motorized vehicles… Continue reading

Feds looking at ways to reunite families amid COVID-19 border restrictions with U.S.

Some families with members of dual-citizenship have become separated due to the pandemic

Condition in kids with possible COVID-19 link being studied in Canada

This month, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued an alert to doctors about MIS-C

North Okanagan farmers’ markets excited to welcome artisans back amid COVID-19

Provincial health officer announced non-food items to return to markets this weekend

‘I knew what he wanted’: Kootenay man spends hours in tree as black bear patrols below

Francis Levasseur is no stranger to the outdoors, but a recent run-in with a bear caused quite a scare

COVID cancelled their wedding plans, so they married on a BC mountaintop

Ceremony was live streamed to friends and family around the world

Mother duck and babies rescued from Highway 97 in Lake Country

The mother and nine ducklings were taken to Duck Lake

Trudeau acknowledges racial unrest in U.S.; ‘We also have work to do in Canada’

‘Anti-black racism, racism, is real; it’s in the United States, but it’s also in Canada,’ Trudeau says

Most Read