KANSAS CITY, Kan. - Many food pantries receive non-perishable food donations, but what they really need is fresh vegetables and fruit.
In honor of National Food Day local nonprofit The Giving Grove donated 14 apple and pear trees to The Cross-lines Community Outreach .
Cross-lines already has a garden where they grow all kinds of vegetables for its food pantry and soup kitchen. The soup kitchen serves on average 300 people everyday.
Matt O'Malley with Cross-lines believes this donation cannot come soon enough. The area around the charity is known as food desert.
"There's not a lot of grocery stores, the produce sections are very small, it's mostly fast food, a lot of people around here are on food stamps and so if they do go to the grocery stores they can only afford so much and produce is the last thing you are going to get for family, it's just so expensive it's going to take up so much of that money," O'Malley said.
A mission that members of The Giving Grove know is so important to the community. Executive Director Rob Reiman says that is one of the reasons the nonprofit was formed.
"Address what we're really trying to address; getting really healthy food into the urban core neighborhoods," Reiman said.
Wendy Groebe and her twin boys were one of the first volunteers to show up to dig the holes and plant the fruit trees.
"I said we're planting trees and they were really excited and they said we want to go help," Groebe said.
Cross-line members had to agree to take care of the trees before The Giving Grove would commit to donating the trees. Even though the trees are in the ground it will be a few years before they will start producing the fruit that will benefit low-income families.
"You're talking one apple tree producing six tons of food in 30 years and that's so much food," O'Malley said.
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