Aid Gleaning Project

Editor, Gettysburg Times,

In the middle of Gettysburg on a street that is hard to find (153 N. Stratton St), there’s an oasis — “something that provides refuge, relief, or pleasant contrast” — that is home to The Gleaning Project. Led by the always positive, buoyant, indefatigable Lizzy Cooper, this organization gathers fruits and vegetables in one spot from farmers who magnanimously either invite volunteer gleaners to their beautiful farms to harvest a portion of a field or orchard or who bring in their overabundance themselves. Backyard gardeners also contribute, some of whom plant gardens specifically for this cause and others who don’t want their vegetables to go to waste, unable to cajole or coerce their loved (?) one to eat another stalk of Swiss chard or try another zucchini recipe. This produce is then available at no cost to our neighbors, the families who struggle to provide healthy fruits and vegetables for their children and the seniors who can’t stretch their dollars any farther. There are no questions asked here and one is encouraged to take as much as needed. The Gleaning Project does a wonderful job of reusing and recycling practically everything, but money is needed for the two trucks, which aren’t getting any younger, as well as gas for the trucks, supplies for preserving produce, plastic crates for storage, etc., which is why Glean-a-Mania, an annual fundraiser in its 3rd year, will be held from Aug. 17-23. During this week, gleaners will be trying to snag every last cucumber, tomato, and pepper available, kind of like the Grinch at Cindy Lou Who’s house taking everything possible down to the very last crumb. Unlike the Grinch, though, these gleaners have big hearts, with a goal to glean more than 8000 pounds during this week to give to their neighbors. If you, your neighbor, family, friends, and/or social club would pledge half a penny or more for each pound gleaned and help The Gleaning Project reach its goal of 100 pennies, this would net roughly $8000. For more information on how to donate or how to volunteer as a gleaner, please visit www.thegleaningproject.org or call (717) 884-8373. And please stop by at this oasis for refuge or relief and see for yourself a superb example of neighbor helping neighbor. The Grinch did get it right at the end when he made his toast: “To kindness and love, the things we need most.”

J.R. Scappini,

Gettysburg

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