Hopelink Harvest | Hopelink Hopelink

Hopelink Harvest

Hopelink Harvest  

Growing Connections to Fresh Food

Hopelink Harvest is the hub of Hopelink’s efforts to increase access to healthy food. Through partnerships with local farms, farmers markets, community gardens, and individual growers, the Hopelink Harvest program collects donations of surplus produce for distribution at Hopelink food banks. Together, we are growing a healthier community for everyone!

What We Do

  • Local Farm Gleaning – During the harvest season (July through October), Hopelink Harvest volunteers harvest fruits and vegetables (i.e. glean) from local farms for Hopelink food banks. Through the generosity of our farm partners (see list of participating farms below), over 35,000 pounds of fresh produce were gleaned in 2016.
  • Food Bank Gardens – The Bellevue, Carnation, Kirkland, and Redmond Hopelink locations have onsite gardens in which the most requested and culturally-relevant vegetables are grown for Hopelink clients. In Carnation, clients are given garden space and training to grow their own food, in support of their journey out of poverty and toward self-sufficiency.
  • Healthy Cooking Demonstrations – Volunteers conduct over 50 hours of cooking demonstrations each month, preparing and handing out samples of healthy recipes that are budget-friendly and feature fresh, seasonal ingredients.

Volunteer Sign-ups

Get Involved

Volunteers have fun and learn about food and farming while serving their community.

We welcome new volunteers for the following positions:
  • Gleaning Volunteer – Volunteer on a weekly basis, or for a one-time event. Shifts are 2-hours in Carnation, Duvall, Redmond and Snohomish. Community and business groups welcome.
  • Farmers Market Tabling – Share the impact of Hopelink Harvest with the community and recruit volunteers. Shifts are typically 2-hours at Farmer’s Markets in Redmond, Carnation, Bellevue, Shoreline.
  • Cooking Demo Volunteer – Volunteer at Hopelink food banks sampling and demonstrating easy, healthy recipe ideas. Shifts are 2-hours at all Hopelink sites.
  • Garden Volunteer – Volunteer in Hopelink food bank gardens, weeding and harvesting fresh produce. Shifts are 2-hours at Bellevue, Carnation, Kirkland.
  • Donating Produce – Home and community gardeners are welcome to donate their surplus produce to any Hopelink location during business hours.

Farm & Community Partners

History

Sno-Valley Harvest was founded at Hopelink in 2011 in partnership with Rotary First Harvest and AmeriCorps*VISTA. The partnership provided three years of funding to support AmeriCorps*VISTA volunteers who collaborated with Hopelink staff and community partners to found and grow the program. Over 109,000 pounds of produce was collected and distributed at Hopelink and other local food banks over the first three years of the program. With the end of AmeriCorps*VISTA funding for Sno-Valley Harvest in 2014, Hopelink is proud to take on full ownership of the program and looks forward to expanding the program’s operations and impact in coming years under the new name Hopelink Harvest.

Why Healthy Food Matters

The United States Department of Agriculture defines food insecurity as “limited or uncertain availability of nutritionally adequate and safe foods or limited or uncertain ability to acquire acceptable foods in socially acceptable ways.” In Washington, 14.6 percent of households experienced food insecurity, with 6.1 percent of households falling within the “very low food security” category. Food insecurity is associated with poor dietary intake among seniors and younger adults, and has a variety of negative impacts, particularly related to health and the ability for children to learn in school. By providing a consistent and direct source of fresh and locally grown produce, the Hopelink Harvest program is a critical component of ensuring that all members of our community have access to healthy food.