Saturday, August 6, 2011

Do You Have Fruit Trees? Let Bread for the City Harvest Your Fruit

I received a letter from a volunteer at Bread for the City, a DC charity that each year feeds thousands of homeless residents, about a new program that harvests fresh fruits from homeowners' trees in the DC area. Although I chronicled my planting woes leading up to the ultimately successful establishment of a pear tree in my front yard, it is, alas for the program, strictly an ornamental pear. However, I pass along this letter in the hopes that some of you have bountiful, fruit-bearing trees or vegetable gardens with excess produce, who would welcome these volunteer harvesters for a good cause.

Dear DC Resident,

Do you have fruit growing on your property? Does some of it go to waste every year? If so, you can help Bread for the City feed tens of thousands of our most vulnerable neighbors.

Bread for the City provides food, clothing, medical care, legal and social services to low-income residents of DC for free. We currently rescue tons of surplus produce from area farms and farmers markets -- fresh food that would otherwise go to waste. Instead, through our Glean for the City program, this food gets to thousands of DC families in need.

We are now expanding Glean for the City to harvest fresh fruit from trees within the DC area! So we need your help. If you have apple or pear trees on your property or in your community, and if they produce more fruit than you need, we want to hear from you!

Reply to or just fill out the form here. We will call or email you with more detailed questions about your trees and how we can best work with you to harvest the fruit. (If you know of any neighbors or friends who might also be interested in participating, pleaselet them know.)

We are also looking for volunteers to help pick the fruit and even organize neighborhood harvest parties! There are many ways to help. If you are interested, please contact Tonya Hamilton, Bread for the City’s gleaning coordinator at We thank you in advance for any contributions -- in time or fruit -- that you can make toward this project.

Gautam Mani
Food Access Intern
Bread for the City
1525 7th Street NW
Washington, DC 20001

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