I have been at Hidden Villa for almost a year now as a farm intern, and during this time I have had the opportunity to help run the "Growing Healthy Families" program. Before the season got underway in 2012, I was able to visit and volunteer with the Community Services Agency (CSA) of Mountain View's Food and Nutrition Center, the agency that distributes Hidden Villa's produce to our low income neighbors. It was an invaluable experience to be able to meet the folks who would soon be receiving our produce, and to see a typical day at the CSA. My biggest takeaway was that while there were ample donations of bread and packaged foods, the fresh produce had to be monitored and metered so that everyone who visited had a chance to take something home. As the season progressed and we were able to provide more produce, I realized what a large impact this program has for the CSA of Mountain View members. Over the five or so months that we are able to provide produce, I helped pick and package hundreds of pounds of tomatoes, squash, melons, cooking greens, and much more that I knew were going straight to families who could really use them.
Through thoughtful and generous donations through GlobalGiving.org, we were able to produce and donate much more food than ever before in 2012. Looking ahead to 2013, we expect to meet and exceed last year's numbers by providing fresh produce to families from June through November. Over the past couple of seasons we have been able to improve the program by identifying crops that are most appreciated by CSA Mountain View members. This season we are using that information to plan our production so that it will reflect these wants.
Thank you all so much for helping to make this program possible. When you donate to Growing Healthy Families, you are providing the means for Hidden Villa to provide fresh, organic food for over 4,800 low-income families in Silicon Valley. You are also helping to provide new farmers like myself with the knowledge and tools make access to healthy food possible for folks of all backgrounds.
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Los Altos Hills,
Los Altos Hills,