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Victory Gardens

Victory Gardens is a simple idea that dates back to World War II when home gardeners grew extra food to help with war efforts. Now battle lines are drawn against hunger and malnutrition right here in the Skagit Valley. One in four families rely on food banks and that number is growing.  Your excess produce can help people in need in your community.

Home gardeners are encouraged and invited to donate your surplus fruits and vegetables through the Victory Gardens program, which will link your produce to local food banks and hot meal programs. The purpose is twofold: Feeding hungry people who rely on food banks and improving the nutritional content of their meals.  It also helps keep fresh, locally grown food right here in our community. 

We also have attractive garden markers announcing your support of Victory Gardens, and encouraging others to get involved.  Supplies are limited- please contact us for more details.

Share your garden’s bounty with food bank families

Call Community Action at 360-416-7585 or email when you have a bag, a box, or a truck load of fruits or vegetables and we will direct you to where you can drop off the donation.

The Bounty is Plentiful

Charlene Day’s donation of tomato plants grew international connections when she donated them to HeartPrints Food Pantry in Mount Vernon. 

Charlene grew the tomatoes lovingly from seed. After she’d given away numerous plants to friends and neighbors on Samish Island, she recalled reading about Victory Gardens in the Skagit Valley Herald. Victory Gardens is a phone link for gardeners who want to donate to food banks.  

Sue Norton, HeartPrints director, was excited about receiving the quart-size plants because she had already drilled holes in buckets to prepare them as plant containers. She hoped to give clients do-it-yourself, container garden kits. 

The timing was perfect. Charlene wanted the plants to go to families with children, so they could tend the tomatoes and learn about growing food. Charlene, with her son Ross Howell, arrived at HeartPrints with the plants. They soon realized the food bank clients who would be transplanting the tomatoes into the buckets would need potting soil. Off they went and purchased soil. 

When they returned, clients were arriving at HeartPrints, many of them from homelands in Eastern Europe. Much to Charlene’s delight, she fell into conversation with people from Belarus, which borders Russia, Ukraine and Poland. Charlene speaks the language because she lived in Belarus with her family during their Peace Corps service. 

Charlene’s donation helped Sue reach her goal of teaching families about gardening and it also reconnected Charlene with places and peoples from her past.

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