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Plant a Row for the Hungry

Eastmorland is a participant in the Plant a Row for the Hungry Neighborhood Challenge. The challenge is sponsored by the Community Action Coalition for South Central Wisconsin (CAC).

Hunger is a global problem, but the lack of fresh vegetables in our own neighborhoods is something we can address with the help of our local home gardeners.

In an effort to increase the summer supply of fresh produce at Dane County food pantries, Community Action Coalition for South Central Wisconsin Inc. (CAC) is announcing the “Plant a Row for the Hungry – Neighborhood Challenge” to collect extra produce from home gardeners for distribution to food pantries.

Here’s how it works:

  1. An individual from the neighborhood volunteers to oversee the initiative and organizes individual gardeners within the neighborhood to pledge to donate extra produce from their garden to a local hunger relief agency. The neighborhood association then contacts CAC with their pledge.
  2. The neighborhood representative announces veggie collection dates –with input from the food pantry. Visit http://www.cacscw.org/plant-a-row.php to find a listing of local hunger relief agencies and collection day/times.
  3. On the collection date, home gardeners package up their excess food, and leave it at a collection site determined by the neighborhood representative. Look for the collection box in the Eastmorland Community Garden. Note: all donations should be clean, good quality and at the correct stage of ripeness.
  4. The fresh veggies are delivered to the food pantry by a collector who has been designated by the neighborhood representative.
  5. The collector or food pantry weighs the food, fills out the donor slip, and has the pantry sign it. Completed donor slips are given to the neighborhood representative.
  6. The neighborhood representative then sends copies of donor slips each month to CAC from June 1st – October 31st.
  7. The neighborhood association in Dane County with the greatest donation total at the end of the season wins a $200 cash prize sponsored by Olds Seeds Company and will be recognized at the Mayor’s Neighborhood Roundtable Gathering in November.

Home gardeners can make a difference, and this challenge is a method of making it easier to donate excess produce to neighbors in need – reducing hunger one vegetable at a time. If your neighborhood is interested in participating in this challenge, contact Michelle Shively to discuss the details of your participation or clarify any questions you may have.

Michelle Shively, AmeriCorps VISTA – Food Pantry Gardens
608-246-4730 ext 234

Chris Brockel, Manager of Food and Gardens
608-246-4730 ext 206