I have to say that I am so happy about the support WV Veterans to Ag has gotten from those who I asked to be part of this wonderful mission. I have asked for plant and seed donations from a couple of farmers, friends, and businesses in the local area and the response has been great! Perennial Favorites was the first on board, agreeing to supply plants for us to use for our Backyard Victory Gardens. Donna is a generous supporter of her community and I am not surprised that she was the first to commit to helping us.
Stephanie and Tim Appleton of Mil-Ton Farms also surprised us with seeds, a rather large box of seeds. When I went to pick up seeds from her, little did I know there would be so many! We will be harvesting beans and corn, among other vegetables, pretty soon thanks to their generous support.
Gale Patton, a friend, owner of Top Hat Ballroom, and Director at Unlimited Future, Inc, also had a donation for us. Beautiful tomato plants for a Veteran. I had contacted Gail because she knows so may folks, I thought she might pass on our request. I never dreamed she would generously donate out of her personal garden.
Tia and Jay Stump, one of our participating families, donated extra plants they had started earlier in the spring. A tray of green peppers, that once separated turned out to be nearly 100 healthy, lovely California Wonder Plants, each about 12 inches tall already. What a wonderful way to help care for fellow Veterans!
What an awesome display of community support and brother/sisterhood. It is a warm and wonderful feeling that I get when folks donate to our Veterans. This program is such a good thing for those we work with. For so many, food security is just one part of this project. Those who serve often have scars that we can’t see, such as PTSD, TBI, or Military Sexual Trauma. These Veterans struggle with their barriers, many times silently, trying to manage daily life. Programs like this, that reach out and offer a helping hand, making the difference in the life of one who struggles with these wounds. The soil reaches a place that nothing else can, for so many; providing peace and comfort.
It also provides a way for a community within a community to be re-established. Veterans connect with one and another, families support each other, friendships are built, and strength is shared among the group. Reconnecting those in the community is a wonderful part of this amazing local food, food security, gardening, agriculture program. Thanks to all those who give to help us continue our mission. Your gift means more than you might ever know…