“No one in Maine should go hungry. There is plenty of food.” Good Shepherd Food Bank President Kristen Miale is correct (“We can end hunger in Maine,” column, Jan. 14).

Our Central Maine Gleaners Group is composed of local volunteers who take action to improve food security in Waterville. Gleaning is “the act of collecting excess fresh foods from gardens, farms and markets to provide it to people in need.” Gleaners gather healthy food from places that have extra and bring it to places that help feed our neighbors.

From May to November, our volunteers gleaned produce worth $2,695 from the Waterville Farmers’ Market. Guests at the Mid-Maine Homeless Shelter enjoyed the fresh fruits and vegetables.

Both MaineGeneral and Colby College contribute healthy prepared food left over from their cafeterias. We gleaned 2,120 pounds of food from MaineGeneral last summer and fall.

Young professionals in KV Connect collect meals from Colby’s Take Four program. Starting on World Food Day, Oct. 16, through Christmas break, our community partners gleaned 132 hot entrees, 60 soups, 522 sandwiches or big salads, and 890 sides (yogurt, green salads or fruit salad). Individuals at the Evening Sandwich Program at the Universalist Unitarian Church in Waterville appreciate the variety of these food choices.

Last year, our volunteers gleaned 1,821 pounds of fresh produce from nearby farms. People at the Alfond Youth Center, Muskie Center, Sacred Heart Soup Kitchen, Waterville Food Bank and Winslow Food Pantry enjoyed the extra potatoes, squash and apples.

If you are interested in helping us glean, contact Steve at [email protected] or join “KV Connect Food Distribution” group on BAND — https://band.us/n/a3a426e0Lb91u.

Let’s work together to end hunger in central Maine.

Linda Woods

on behalf of the Central Maine Gleaners Group


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