Philabundance Kicks Off 20th Year of Share the Harvest
All produce donated through Share the Harvest will go directly neighborhood food pantries
Philadelphia, Pa. – June 25, 2013 – Philabundance, the region’s largest hunger relief organization, is kicking off the 20th anniversary of the annual Share the Harvest program with WXTU on July 6, 2013. Over the past 20 years, gardeners have been planting dedicated rows of produce in their gardens to help provide fresh, local fruits and veggies to their neighbors in need of food. Philabundance is asking for neighbors do the same this year while celebrating the generosity of Delaware Valley home gardeners over the last 20 years.
Share the Harvest encourages home gardeners to grow fruits and vegetables or collect any surplus produce from their harvest and donate to Philabundance to fight hunger in the Delaware Valley. Beginning July 6th through Sept. 21st, 2013, Philabundance will accept produce donations on Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. at 10 locations throughout the Delaware Valley (see list of drop-off sites below). Each week the produce collected from local gardeners will go to nearby food pantries in the community of the site.
Philabundance is in need of volunteers each Saturday from 10 a.m. -12 p.m. July 6th through September 21st to greet gardeners and deliver the donated produce from the garden center to the food pantry. For those interested in volunteering or would like more information, please email email@example.com.
92.5 XTU, Philadelphia’s country music station, is partnering with Philabundance for the 7th year in a row and has committed to a summer-long effort to encourage people to share their garden with their neighbors in need.
Although the nutritional value of produce is high, it is typically the first thing cut from the grocery list when money gets tight making Share the Harvest an important program that connects people in need with food they otherwise cannot afford. Additionally, the USDA is reporting that U.S. consumers will pay 3.5 percent to 4.5 percent more for produce in 2013, compared to 2012, making it even more challenging for those families already struggling.
Philabundance and the agencies they serve are experiencing a 29 percent increase in need compared to last year and a 98 percent increase over the last three years. On a nationwide scale, the USDA’s Food Security Study released in late 2012, is reporting that the tough economy saw more than 17 million Americans struggle to get enough food to eat in 2011, causing a great strain on hunger relief organizations across the country.
Philabundance believes everyone should have access to fresh healthy foods. 42 percent of all food they distribute is produce. They hope Share the Harvest will inspire gardeners to help fight hunger and increase the access for those in need of fresh produce, as it is the first thing cut from the grocery list when money is tight. Last year, gardeners donated 5,275 pounds of produce through the Share the Harvest program.
Share the Harvest, established in 1993, is based on the “victory gardens” concept, where residents planted home gardens in the United States, Canada, and United Kingdom during World Wars I and II to reduce the pressure on the public food supply brought on by the war effort.
Share the Harvest drop-off sites include the locations below, and more locations may be added. For more information, visit www.philabundance.org/sharetheharvest.
Laurel Hill Gardens, 8125 Germantown Ave, Philadelphia
Carousel Gardens, 591 Durham Rd., Newtown
Seasons Garden Center, 1069 River Rd., PO Box 20 Washington Crossing
Gardner’s Landscape Nursery, 535 W. Uwchlan Ave., Chester Springs
Linvilla Orchards, 137 W. Knowlton Rd., Media
Albrecht’s Garden Center Nursery, 650 Montgomery Ave., Narberth
St. Asaphs, 27 Conshohocken State Rd., Bala Cynwyd,
Rhoads Garden, 570 DeKalb Pike, North Wales
Primex Garden Center, 435 West Glenside Ave., Glenside
Springdale Farms, 1638 S. Springdale Rd., Cherry Hill, NJ
Philabundance reduces hunger and food insecurity in the Delaware Valley by providing food access to people in need in partnership with organizations and individuals. Philabundance provides a full plate of services through neighborhood distribution programs and a network of close to 500 member agencies in 9 counties. Philabundance serves approximately 65,000 people per week at a cost of 50 cents per meal. There are more than 900,000 people in the Delaware Valley who are at risk for chronic hunger and malnutrition. In 2012, Philabundance distributed 25 million pounds of food. For more information about Philabundance, visit www.philabundance.org or call 215-339-0900. Visit us on Facebook, Facebook.com/Philabundance and follow us on Twitter, Twitter.com/Philabundance. If you or someone you know is in need of food assistance, please call Philabundance’s Food Help Line, 800-319-Food (3663).