This morning I was at an event called Produce to People. The program was created to give fresh produce to the needy directly and without question. The idea is that receiving free, healthy food can be easier than going to the food bank or filling out qualification forms. It’s supposed to make receiving fresh produce as stress-free and encouraging as possible for those in need.
I was there for a newspaper that I’m interning with and I had to do some interviewing. After talking to a few of the project coordinators, I decided to talk to one of the families who were waiting in line for their share. I was nervous. I didn’t want to embarrass anyone by asking how they felt about the program or quoting them in the paper. Some people might feel embarrassed for needing the extra assistance after all.
I got lucky. The couple I asked wouldn’t shut up. They were so thankful for all of the extra help to feed their family. They were actually pleased to be waiting in line for their box full of potatoes, watermelons, canned goods and juice.
I talked with the couple for about 15 minutes and learned about all of their views on food stamps and the food bank. I was complaining about how expensive organic food is. Then I found out that the wife, Bobbi, used to work in produce at a grocery store. She told me that if you wash your vegetables in a weak saltwater mix, it will wash away most of the pesticides on your produce…which is a much cheaper way to go than buying organic if it works!
I have no idea if it works or not, but my point is that if you open yourself up to listen and help people, people will listen and help you back. I wrote a story that could raise awareness to people who may need that free produce, and a sweet couple gave me some tips back.
Also, the husband, Clint, is going into surgery in about two weeks for his esophagus, keep him and his family in your prayers.