Land’s Generosity Passed Forward to Others
In a year of uncertainty, one thing has held steady: the unending generosity of the land. Our fields and soils are oblivious to the global pandemic, political turmoil, and painful systemic injustices exposed across the nation. The land gives. The soil teems with microorganisms busily enhancing fertility to support our growing vegetables. Through the gifts of the land and the hard work of our farmers, Gaining Ground continues to produce more food than ever before in a time of unprecedented need.
As of late October 2020, we have harvested and distributed 119,000 pounds of organic produce this season. This represents roughly 476,000 individual servings. With production on par with 2019 despite drought and a lack of 2,500 volunteers, we anticipate the farm’s total volume for 2020 will match or exceed last year’s total by season’s end in November. We have partnered this year with 15 hunger relief organizations across the Greater Boston region to bring fresh, healthy food to over a thousand food-insecure households each week. In particular, we have broadened our reach into communities hit hardest by COVID-19 including Chelsea, East Boston, and Waltham.
Thank you so much for your incredible donations each week; this is really making a huge difference in many people’s lives. – Sandra Nijjar, East Boston Community Soup Kitchen
Each season we tailor the crops grown for distribution based on feedback from our recipient partners. So far this year, our highest volume crops by weight have been carrots (11,636 pounds), summer squash (10,786 pounds) and tomatoes (10,287 pounds). We grew 3,600 more pounds of cucumbers and 4,000 more pounds of summer squash compared to 2019 in order to match the preferences of our partner organizations and their guests. We work with these recipients to ensure that our neighbors in need receive the freshest, highest quality food available, offered with dignity and respect. Nourishing food should be a right, not a privilege.
We are so grateful to you and your organization for supporting us all these months. Our clients absolutely love the fresh produce and it has helped to support our model of providing wholesome, nutritious and fresh food to our clients. Everyone deserves good food! – Heidi Porter, Bedford Food Bank
I have no income at present. These were trying times. Food for Families was not only a source of fresh, local, organic produce. It also gave a sense of community which had much value…I looked forward to being greeted by very friendly and enthusiastic volunteers of this program on Saturdays. You could tell there was humble pride in knowing that the recipients were being given healthy organic food grown right here in town. You can’t get any fresher than that, just picked a mile away from the distribution place! My go-to staple lunch has been fresh veggies daily. The produce has so much flavor which is distinctively different than supermarket produce…Thank you all for this wonderful program. It brought hope through food and community during a difficult time! – 2020 Food for Families guest