January 8 – ALBANY – Flint River Fresh, working with Community Food Champions, continues to answer the call to action to keep healthy food growing in food deserts on the next day of service Martin Luther King Jr ..
Flint River Fresh is leading the planned community garden expansion, installation or revitalization activities for the Holley Homes Community Garden in Albany and the Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter Boys & Girls Club in Plains on January 15 and 17, respectively.
Echoing King’s words “Anyone Can Be Great … Because Anyone Can Serve,” the Flint River Fresh community and stakeholders note the impact achieved even when volunteers are few. While essential safety protocols to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 and its variants limit the number of volunteers, plans to install and plant new raised garden beds at the Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter Boys & Girls Club in Plains are advancing. Additionally, plans to clean up and prepare the Holley Homes Community Garden in Albany for seasonal planting are underway.
In addition, two community gardens in Dougherty and Sumter counties will benefit from extensive maintenance and care, including the planting of new fruit trees and seasonal crops.
Expanding the scope of impact beyond community gardens, Flint River Fresh will facilitate the assembly of bags of fresh produce to be delivered to vulnerable populations, supported by the Dougherty Fresh and Healthy Sumter initiatives. Flint River Fresh will partner with community food champions including Sherwood Baptist Church, Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital and Phoebe Sumter, whose representatives will join volunteers making contactless deliveries.
Honoring King’s legacy and vision for the community, these 2022 community service projects will help increase community resilience and improve healthy eating options for neighbors without equitable access to healthy food. Other benefits of volunteering with Flint River Fresh include learning or improving skills to transform green spaces into community dining spaces and build self-reliance.
The King Day of Service Projects with Phoebe in 2020 was a hard-hitting community event kicking off Fifth Avenue Community Garden in Albany. Over 100 volunteers of varying skill levels, ages and backgrounds came together and set up the infrastructure for the currently thriving community food production space serving community members in Dougherty County. The work that started with the community and stakeholders taking the opportunity to make a difference and help increase access to healthy food for people living in food deserts and to support a healthier community has resulted in thousands of pounds of fresh fruits and vegetables planted, grown, and harvested for donation to local food banks or hunger relief organizations.
For more information on volunteering with Flint River Fresh, visit flintriverfresh.org/volunteer. The organization adheres to CDC guidelines and local regulations to mitigate and prevent the spread of COVID-19 and its variants. Flint River Fresh volunteer registrations are currently at maximum capacity for MLK Day of Service 2022 activities. However, a volunteer waiting list is available. Email your questions about volunteer activities and safety protocols to [email protected]