A strong and well-established organization such as BMAC behind your program makes it easier to approach growers and let them know where and how their excess produce will be distributed. Try to make initial contact with potential donors in the off-season when they are likely less busy. Talk to anyone and everyone you can - it never hurts to approach a donor and ask. If they can’t donate, maybe they know someone who can.
Growers who donate:
Be sure to always let your donor know that you appreciate their produce and time and allowing you to glean. Every month or at the end of the season, send a thank you note with the total amount of pounds they donated for their tax purposes to show your appreciation.
WWCH stresses to any donor that all volunteers are required to sign a Release of Liability and Waiver before attending any gleaning event. WWCH also provides them with information about the Good Samaritan Act and USDA gleaning information. Ensure the grower that training takes place before every glean and that the gleaning coordinator will always be present. Make sure volunteer training includes: farm etiquette, proper use of harvesting tools, and safety protocol.
Distribution of seeds and plant starts for Plant-A-Row for the Hungry.
A food bank garden plot in a community garden.
Gleaning from orchards, farms, gardens, cull bins and the Farmer’s Market.
Nutrition Education with recipe cards and cooking classes.