Nearly three dozen youngsters joined forces earlier this year to sell their wares in support of the Canadian Foodgrains Bank Acres of Hope growing project in Rivers. The farmers’ market style sale raised $3,215.
It’s a combination that’s hard to resist — fresh garden produce, home-baked goods and 35 eager and lively youngsters waiting to sell their wares in support of the Canadian Foodgrains Bank Acres of Hope growing project in Rivers.
Nearly three dozen youngsters joined forces earlier this year to sell their wares in support of the Canadian Foodgrains Bank Acres of Hope growing project in Rivers. The farmers’ market style sale raised $3,215. (SUBMITTED)
Canadian Foodgrains Bank marketing co-ordinator Sandra Dudych, background, visited the sale and was struck by the lessons learned by the young gardeners. (SUBMITTED)
The sale, in the form of a farmers’ market, was held on three Thursdays in August in the town and raised $3,215 for the foodgrains bank.
It was spearheaded by Esther Krahn and her nine grandchildren, who had previously raised funds for the foodgrains bank by selling corn over the last two summers.
"The children were very enthusiastic about helping hungry people," said Krahn, adding that members of the local 4-H club also helped at the sale and donate baked goods to it.
"I think these kind of projects are a neat intergenerational idea for families to work together to help those less fortunate," she said, noting that 15 families were involved in the sale.
Although most of the children involved in the project were from the Rivers Baptist Church, other children in the community also participated.
Among them was eight-year-old Sera Gilbert. She got involved after seeing the first week of the market.
"I asked if I could work here for the next two sales because I wanted to help others who have no food," she said.
Samuel Krahn, 10, is a veteran of the farmers’ market.
"We want to raise money for a good cause to help people who don’t have enough food to eat because God wants us to help them," he said of his involvement in the effort.
Samuel’s role was to supervise other helpers to ensure they were providing good customer service.
"I supervised the bagging of vegetables and made sure everyone had a job to do," he said.
He also had his own produce for sale through the market.
"I had my own kid’s garden," he said. "I grew everything adults grew in their gardens."
For Samuel’s mother, Leisel, the market was a great way for her children to learn about the needs of others.
"We are now able to have deeper conversations on why we are doing this volunteer work," she said. "Their work ethic has improved with the project, and they are gaining a better understanding of how important it is to help others."
Every child had a job to do at the market. Toddlers helped older children put produce into bags for sale, while older children served customers.
The market was a hit with people in Rivers; during the sales, a steady stream of customers chose from beets, potatoes, carrots, corn, tomatoes, cucumbers, squash, leeks and string beans, along with home baking such as bread, cookies, muffins, and cakes.
"In the process of growing food and selling it, the children also learned about global hunger and how their small hands and big hearts could help others who go hungry every day," said Sandra Dudych, the foodgrains bank marketing co-ordinator who visited the sale.
"It was great to see how they could raise produce, smiles and funds to help others."
The Acres of Hope growing project in Rivers is one of more than 200 across Canada that raises funds for the foodgrains bank every year.
Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition November 5, 2013