- Author: Jeannette E. Warnert
UC Cooperative Extension in Calaveras County has been instumental in initiating a program aimed at providing fresh, healthful food to local residents in need. Farm to Family is actively encouraging gardeners to help supply the local food bank by planting extra vegetables in the coming months, according to a story in today's Stockton Record.
A food shortfall last Thanksgiving and Christmas prompted local decisionmakers to collaborate with UCCE and farmers to find a way to feed hungry families at a time when the economy is putting the squeeze on funding options.
The group identified its chief assets:
"We are land rich, and we have a lot of people who care about each other," the story quoted Calaveras County supervisor Steve Wilensky.
According to the Record article, written by Dana Nichols, UCCE found money to hire Paloma-based organic farmer Sean Kriletich to coordinate Farm to Family. Kriletich is working on a system for picking up donated zucchini and tomatoes from home summer gardens and coordinating volunteers who want to help in community gardens. For now, Kriletich's efforts are focused on people who already know how to garden, but in the future the program may include gardening classes for novices interested in getting involved.
More information about Farm to Family is on the UCCE Web site.