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Solidarity in Brittany

Fresh vegetables to fight hunger

How can we alleviate the hunger that still grips the far too many families living below the poverty line in Brittany? In the heart of this rural region, initiatives are multiplying to supplement food bank donations. And what if adding fresh produce to the baskets distributed made a significant difference? In our Mandala vegetable garden, the vegetables grown with care feed our family but are above all distributed to the most disadvantaged, offering a glimmer of hope in a world where balanced nutrition is often difficult to achieve.

From soil to Table

This project began modestly. This 500m2 vegetable garden was created in April 2023, managed by a single person, and quickly grew to become an abundant source of fresh vegetables. Without claiming the ‘organic’ label, we strive to supply produce grown without pesticides, in optimal conditions. This first year will enable us to adjust our sowing plans with the aim of becoming self-sufficient in reproducible seeds.

The Riec-sur-Bélon Food Bank: a key partner

The collaboration with the Banque Alimentaire de Riec-sur-Bélon is the backbone of this fledgling humanitarian initiative. The dedicated volunteers at the food bank welcomed us with open arms to collect the surplus harvest and distribute it to families in need. Every harvest is precious, and the generosity of these donations helps to meet a crucial need for local families.

An impact on food balance?

If we can help to ensure that families living below the poverty line in Brittany have better access to fresh, nutritious produce, our daily labours will be rewarded. The vegetables from our kitchen garden are a source of well-being and comfort for these people, who often can’t afford to buy quality produce. We plan to create simple, easy-to-make recipe cards so that our chard, cauliflower, carrots, courgettes and other cucurbits don’t just end up steamed or boiled, but give their palates a new flavour. Grilled and flavoured, we test these recipes before adding them to our vegetable baskets.

A call for solidarity

Sowing hope and dignity are key to the mission of food banks. Ours is to sow so that the soil can help us feed those who, like us, have a right to it. Feeding ourselves is a fundamental right, contributing is a duty, ours in any case.

Although the permaculture vegetable garden has already achieved a great deal, it is facing new challenges. More labour is needed to improve yields. The benefactors are therefore calling on the community to join them in this noble cause.

The initiators of the project are inviting anyone who wishes to participate to do so as a volunteer, to contribute their permaculture expertise, or to provide resources to continue supporting vulnerable families in the region. Every gesture counts, and every donation helps to make a significant difference to the lives of those who need it most. We hope that one day everyone with a vegetable garden will be able to distribute their surplus to food banks. It’s a chance to get together for a good cause.

As we make great strides towards a more caring world, let’s try to keep in mind that each inspiring little story reminds us of the power of sharing.

In the press…

Published on: 22 September 2023  -  Filed under: Garden and Vegetable Garden