We’re spotlighting our Back-Farms program with Green Urban Lunchbox, which is a program where we pair up volunteers with low income senior citizens that have the room for a garden. Volunteers learn new gardening techniques every week as well as getting to take home a third of the harvest! In all of the programs with Green Urban Lunchbox, the remaining harvest is taken to food banks around the city.
The program had 30 volunteers that rendered a collective 90 hours of service this past June. 16 gardens were maintained, and from those gardens, 200 pounds of cherries were donated to Meals on Wheels, and 400 apricots were harvested and donated! Program Director Courtney Dean reflected on the service:
“In June we harvested pounds and pounds of cherries. Most of the grade A fruit went to Meals on Wheels who delivers meals to seniors all around our city. The seniors were more than ecstatic about receiving the fresh fruit! The Green Urban Lunchbox was featured in the Salt Lake Tribune for making a contribution to senior's lives by simple providing fresh fruit for their enjoyment. Many of whom had not had fresh fruit, especially cherries in quite some time. Providing something as simple as fruit, which I buy weekly for myself, to someone who doesn't have the financial privilege to buy such things is an amazing feeling. People simply don't have access to health food, even if they wanted to live a healthier life style it cannot always be incorporated into their daily lives. Seniors have a set budget without much room for wiggle, providing them with something that is a standard for living should be a goal of every community.”