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North Hastings Community Cupboard gets funding to help community access healthy food options

North Hastings Community Cupboard is getting $20,000 from Community Food Centre Canada’s Good Food Access fund.

Director of Communications for the foodbank Monica Piercey s explains the funding is to be used to provide healthy food options. With that in mind, they purchased four tower gardens “Those tower gardens will allow us to grow fresh, healthy organic produce year-round,” Piercey says. She adds that the towers allow for produce to be quickly and they’re something that will be used even after the pandemic ends.

A tower garden (Photo supplied by: Monica Piercey)

The four towers will be kept at the foodbank’s office at 2 Madawaska Street on top of the gardens they have on-site.

“This is such an amazing opportunity,” Piercey says. She believes there’s potential to expand and opens up the possibility of growing fresh produce for some local restaurants or packaging what’s grown up and giving it out to clients.

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Part of the funding will also be used to purchase extra Good Food Boxes through the Community Development Council of Quinte’s program. It’s a wholesale produce buying program run by the CDC who – like the foodbank – are funded by United Way Hastings and Prince Edward, but have their own client base that they provide the Good Food Boxes too. Piercey says the boxes are available for half the price of what it would cost at grocery stores, which makes it an attractive option for families on a budget.

Since the COVID-19 pandemic began, Piercey says the community has been nothing but supportive. “We’re blown away,” she says. Right now, the foodbank is doing well in terms of stock and are also running a soup kitchen out of Club 580 from 4 to 7 PM on weekdays and 11 AM until 2 PM on weekends.

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