Being Called to Grow Food for the Hungry and Homeless

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Hi everyone, my name is Paul Barnes. My wife, Katrina, and I have land on the Eastern Shore of Maryland.   For the last three years we have been growing food for our local homeless shelters and soup kitchens.

This year looks like it might just be our best one yet.  We even built a green house to start our plants indoors so we can grow our crops earlier.


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Growing for the hungry!

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I will add more photos of what’s growing soon!

The other day, we took 8 dozen farm fresh eggs and a load of kale to the Christian Crisis center early in the morning.  The shelter in Salisbury has the ability to handle almost all the food we take them and I always feel like our donation was appreciated and needed.  When I delivered the food I walked into the kitchen:

Me, “Hi, good morning” Then he saw the dozens of eggs I brought.
The cook in the kitchen, “I just opened the refrigerator and said ‘uh- oh we need eggs!’ ”

They are so excited to be back serving families in need after being closed for a year for repairs and remodeling. They looked so happy we didn’t forget about them and that we were still growing our garden to help provide them with fresh, organic, pesticide and GMO free food!

Right now we are growing:

  • Kale
  • Sweet corn
  • Spinach
  • Radishes
  • Yellow squash
  • Zucchini
  • Butternut squash
  • Spaghetti squash
  • Pole beans
  • Lima beans
  • Cantaloupe
  • Watermelon
  • Broccoli
  • Onions
  • Tomatoes
  • Bell peppers
  • Okra
  • Cucumbers

And more will be planted as the season continues 🙂
We would like to expand and grow our operation to help feed more hungry children and families in need healthy, organic food.

The shelters we grow food for currently, one shelter feeds 1200 people a month and the other shelter houses and feeds 50 families a day.

We spend our extra time and money growing food for the homeless and the hungry. Fresh food is so important for people in need.  Canned and non perishable foods are not the best diet for anyone, especially growing children.

Last year we were blessed with a large amount of chain link fence that a contractor was throwing away so we used an old horse shed and the fence and now we have chickens and are able to give eggs as well.   We have a small flock of hens, laying up to 30 eggs a day – farm fresh, organic, and semi-free-range (we have to protect our girls from foxes, rogue dogs and stray cats – some of the hens like to wander out of their safe zone)

We have 13 acres total but we can only grow and manage about 2 acres. We don’t have the equipment or man power to use the whole piece of land.

It would be awesome to expand our operation and to be able to feed more people. I hope that in the future there will be trucks rolling off the farm, loaded with fresh food heading to feed hungry families and children.

As I’m sure you can imagine, it takes more than just three people, a rake, a tractor and one disk to make growing 13 acres of food possible!  I have never asked for help in my life and it feels awkward doing so but I know that with more help we can do so much more!

So we started a GoFundMe page to get donations to help buy seeds, plants, tools, make tractor repairs, buy implements, etc…

Even if we don’t raise money we will continue on a small scale. For now our neighbor farmer uses the rest of the land and so it doesn’t become over grown . We had to do something with the extra land our tractor couldn’t bush hog it anymore.

Every dollar you donate will put food in a child’s mouth, help that mother and father feed their family, and helps us help the shelters by feeding people in need the fresh, healthy food they can’t afford or don’t receive.

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