Wear Your Veggies is pleased to donate 5% of the profits from all of our shirt sales to small non-profit organizations who are making a BIG difference in the world! We partner with a new cause every quarter, and are always open to suggestions- we are partial to small causes working on a local level. Learn about our current charitable cause and those we’ve supported in the past below!
OCTOBER-DECEMBER 2010: SUSTAINABLE CONNECTIONS’ FOOD TO BANK ON PROGRAM
Sustainable Connections Food & Farming Program works to support and build the capacity of the local food system and they know how difficult it is as a new farmer just getting started. By signing up for the Food to Bank On project, an organized hub for beginning farmers with less than three years of experience, new farmers are connected with business training, farmer-mentors, an educational stipend, marketing assistance and are paid market rates to deliver thousands of pounds of fresh produce to local food banks.
This training provides a solid foundation to build their business through relationships with retailers and restaurants, connect with business planning experts and seasoned area farmers, and learn valuable marketing skills.
“The business planning series was a huge help to me,” said Alex Winstead of Cascadia Mushrooms, a Food to Bank On farmer graduate. “The skills I learned have already been put to good use in applying to finance the expansion at my farm.”
In 2009, Food To Bank On farms delivered 5,000 lbs of food worth over $9,000 to area food banks, soup kitchens, shelters and social service agencies! Twenty-seven farmers have participated in the three-year program since 2003.
The Food & Farming Program’s strategies are to: 1) provide incentives and tools for consumers to support the art of eating from this place and in support of community, 2) create strong business-to-business relationship and bringing more local food into the marketplace, 3) grow the capacity of the local food system from the ground up, starting with the next generation of farmers. Learn more about their extensive resources for NW beginning farmers HERE. To learn more about the Food & Farming program or to sign up for their monthly e-newsletter, click HERE. Sign up for the Food to Bank On Project HERE.
JULY-SEPTEMBER 2010: GROWING WASHINGTON
Growing Washington is a multi-faceted, community-action oriented nonprofit that grows and distributes food in 2 Washington counties (King & Whatcom), among other things. To really get a sense of the broad offerings of the organization, you’ll have to visit their website, www.growingwashington.org, which is bursting with information. But here’s a brief summary of what they are all about:
“With four farms in three Washington counties, three CSA’s, a Co-op store in downtown Bellingham, more than a dozen farmers market stands, numerous restaurants that make our food into wonderful meals and one of the first farm-to-school programs in Washington State, Growing Washington is doing all we can to get farmers and eaters connected” (from the website)
I spoke with founder Clayton Burrows, who gave me some impressive numbers from the organizations’ food-related efforts last year:
- 200,000 lbs. of food grown and distributed;
- 35 farmers trained (over past 2 years);
- 575 Farmers markets attended;
- 750 CSA memberships fulfilled;
- 50 Restaurants sold to;
- 1/2 dozen or so research & development projects in the works.
Growing Washingtons’ combination of Food Bank and CSA farms get a lot of fresh, local food to a diverse range of NW Washington residents. There is far more to the story, so I encourage you to jump over to their website and get inspired! And I’ll let you know in a blog post in October how much we raised. Now go buy some shirts!