We believe that a community is only as strong as its weakest links. Strong and vibrant communities make sure no falls through the cracks. Some say: that’s the responsibility of government – but that’s only partially true. Luckily, there are many people who care enough to make a real difference, to mobilise others and to help when someone has hit a rough patch.
One of our goals here at Harvest Hub is to give back to the communities that we serve – in a number of different ways. Here are some examples.
- CHARITY PROJECTS
- SAVE A FARMER
- FAMILIES IN DISTRESS
- DONATING BAGS
- HOW CAN YOU HELP?
OzHarvest delivers over 250,000 free meals a month across Sydney. Food is sourced from hundreds of food outlets – wholesalers, retailers, restaurants and takeaway outlets – and turned into free meals that feed homeless and marginalised groups in our communities. Harvest Hub provides between 100Kg and 200Kg of fresh fruit and veg to OzHarvest each week. These are leftovers as well as produce that did not meet our quality standards (but perfectly good to cook meals from). Check out www.ozharvest.org.au for more information about the great work they do.
Many Hubs have set up arrangements with local charities, ranging from meals-on-wheels and the Salvo’s Soup Kitchen to local churches and community centres. In many cases, the Hubs purchase an extra bag for someone who is doing it tough.
Someone may have just lost a job, a mother has been diagnosed with cancer and is going through chemotherapy, a fire destroyed the family home, or the father unexpectedly dies – these are all real stories affecting real people. It’s at times like these that communities pull together and look after kids, cook meals, make sure there is enough to eat – and Harvest Hub helps where possible, either directly or by mobilising Hub members.
Sponsor a group or individual listed on the order page – those who teach basic cooking skills to low-income families to reduce their reliance on take-away food, we have supported ‘The Dish’ who cook 2 meals a week for a group of homeless people in Hornsby.
On the Northern Beaches Community Kitchens and projects such as ‘Men on the Street’. At any given time, we have 5-10 worthy and local causes to which you can donate $1 or more. Harvest Hub matches donations dollar-for-dollar – so just $15 worth of donations will get someone who might be struggling with cancer or a death of a breadwinner with basic food supply. If you have never lived on the edge, it is hard to imagine how much difference this can make for a family that is doing it tough.
- When a member is away in a week but forgets to cancel their standing order, they will be charged just 70% of the cost of the order (in effect, Harvest Hub contributes 30%) – and the fruit & veg is made available to the local charity. Some members, when they go away, elect to leave their order in place for just this purpose (but please do tell us and your Hubster when you do).
- A third way to generate charity food is to set up a dedicated box at the Hubster’s in which members can place anything they don’t really need that week.
You see, lots of ways to help without it costing the earth!
SAVE A FARMER
Money For Jam Project:
Peats Ridge Strawberry growers, John and Marika Vella, nearly lost their whole winter crop to frost. (Berries with black spots on them). Actually it was the combination of frost and wet and the loss represented 6 weeks of picking and was a big blow for a family with four kids to feed.
When we found out about it, we were determined to help them out. we hit upon the idea to turn strawberries into jam – inspired by the Armenian residents of the Ivanhoe Housing Estate in Ryde who received fresh produce weekly off the Macquarie University Market. Jam Maker-in-chief Araxi saw the opportunity to give back and volunteered her services.
We had access to the commercial kitchens at Macquarie University, some student volunteers, discounted jam jars from Plastene and donated sugar from Harkola – business with a heart – meant we could keep the costs to a minimum. The jam was made.
100% of the profit went to the Vella family. We sold 350gms jars for $5 a piece. Well done Harvest Hub members.
FAMILIES IN DISTRESS
As a Harvest Hub member you are part of a greater mission to support Local Growers , encourage growing with integrity, a giveback program to community members, reducing waste and part of the Harvest Hub Rethink movement.
The Rethink Program is a Harvest Hub initiative and an integral part in the concept of communities – Farmer, Hub member and our surrounding community. In association with Love Food Hate Waste, the Crunch and Sip Program, UWS Open Innovation Program, Macquarie University Sustainability, NSW Health – Western Sydney Diabetes, Harvest Hub ask Harvest Hub members to consider how we make purchase choices, looking at ways to reducing packaging, recycling and as a group actively engage in educating other in our food management systems and sustainable behaviours.
Every week a Harvest Hub member knows nothing is wasted. The simple ordering system where you can adapt a Value Bag.