Moncton food bank community garden in need of volunteers

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WATCH ABOVE: A new urban garden to help people in need is taking root at Moncton’s new centralized food bank, but the organization’s community garden at the other end of town is getting overrun with weeds because a lack of volunteers. Global’s Shelley Steeves reports. – Jul 12, 2016

While a new urban garden is taking root in Greater Moncton at the Peter McKee Community Food Centre, another community garden at the other end of town is getting overrun with weeds due to a lack of volunteers.

Food bank manager Ben MacMichael says they took over the former West End Food Bank’s Garden of Hope after the city’s food banks were centralized at the Peter McKee Centre this spring.

READ MORE: Food bank use continues to rise in N.B.

Produce harvested from the garden, located on Salisbury Road, provides fresh healthy produce to people in need.

Community garden off the Salisbury Rd., formerly the “Garden of Hope”. Shelley Steeves/ Global News

“We have a great garden out there it has been going for three years, but we could definitely use some help weeding and making sure it goes well,” MacMichael said.

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MacMichael says they currently only have two volunteers helping tend to the large plot of land and are in desperate need of “sweat equity.”

“We are looking to have 10 or 15 on a regular basis go out there each week,” MacMichael said.

READ MORE: 5 common myths about food bank use in Canada

Volunteer James Smith says he used to volunteer at the garden on the outskirts of town, but now spends his time working in the newer garden.

“There is something about working in the ground, about watering plants and picking out weeds and watching things grow — there is something in there that just produces deep contentment,” Smith said.

MacMichael says almost every garden box in the new is spoken for.

“A family you can sign up and get a box, there is small fee but if you can’t cover that fee that is fine, and you kind of commit to that box and that box is your garden and you grow what you wish you tend to it and at the end of the way you get the produce to take to your family,” MacMichael said.

But, he says the handful of plots located behind the centre are not yet large enough to fill the community’s need and hopes more volunteers will step up to help at both community gardens so that more people, who otherwise might not have access to fresh, healthy produce, can be fed.


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