Sharing the Harvest


It’s muggy out, and the line stretches around the building. But even on this hot day when the sidewalk feels like it could burn bare skin, people are smiling. Laughing and excited, they’re hungry, and happy knowing where the next meal is coming from.

In 2013, Neighborhood House launched a partnership with Second Harvest Heartland to distribute fresh fruits and vegetables to families in need at 8 summer produce distributions. Two years later, we host 27 events across four unique locations, each providing approximately 12,000 pounds of fresh, nutritious produce to over 150 struggling families.

Shannon and his three daughters, Tinah, Jenny and Sarah, visit the produce distribution at the Wellstone Center every month during the summer. This family of four visited their first event last year, and have relied on monthly trips ever since to help supplement their grocery budget.

“The produce distributions help me stretch my family’s healthy eating all winter. Because of what I get at the produce distributions, I don’t need to buy potatoes, tomatoes or cabbage all winter long. When I go to the store, all I have to pick-up is meat, milk and eggs because my freezer is packed full of produce! I like to feed my kids fruits and veggies to keep them healthy,” said Shannon.

As the growing and harvest season progresses, variety becomes a signature of the produce distributions. Shannon’s daughters love fresh fruits and vegetables, and always discover something new and exciting. As they made their way through the line, the girls took turns picking out what produce they wanted. Some surprising favorites on their list: asparagus and mushrooms.

With a loaf of raisin bread as their last selection, Shannon’s family loaded up their red wagon and made their way home to cook a fresh, nutritious meal together.

Learn more about 2016’s produce distributions and sign-up to volunteer HERE