If you want to help the hungry there are many ways to do it. I Googled "soup kitchens Dutchess County" and found a program called The Lunch Box in Poughkeepsie, N.Y., that offers a free hot lunch everyday and dinner when they can find volunteers to host it. I made an appointment with Carol Beck, their coordinator of volunteers, to meet with her and observe the program in action. This program has grown in popularity to the point where they are able to serve dinner most weeknights. For many of their guests, this is their only hot meal of the day.
I have a loyal group of friends who rise to the occasion whenever I put out the call to do a Womanswork evening at The Lunch Box (above). We split up the cooking and show up at the location (about 30 minutes from home) at 4:30 in the afternoon. We’re done by 7 pm.
A couple of weeks ago we served about 125 people baked ziti, tossed salad, bread and homemade chocolate chip cookies. The Lunch Box provides coffee and other beverages. Last summer our friends Bart Louwagie and Linda Puiatti, who are very good at making crepes, joined us for a dinner and brought crepes, fresh fruit and Nutella chocolate spread, so that’s what we offered for dessert. That was special.
There is a strong connection between gardening and food, and Womanswork has made a commitment as a company to help fight hunger, starting locally. Our contribution is small but if everyone (including small businesses) were to find some way to help the hungry it would make a big difference. Plenty of people are doing things. We would love to hear from our readers about what they are doing, and how they got started. Please let us know.
Dorian Winslow, the president of Womanswork, is passionate about making the best products on the market for women who garden and work outdoors.
Horticulture publishes the free weekly e-newsletter, "Smart Gardening Tips," and "The Curious Gardener," a free monthly e-newsletter with more tips and articles by Dorian. Subscribe to our e-newsletters.