KAMLOOPS — The Thompson Valley is rich with local food, from ranches and farms to community gardens and fruit trees. The Gleaning Abundance Program has been operating for several years in the city, picking fruit that fruit tree owners don’t want, or can’t use. Thanks to a new grant the program has received, they’re planning to turn the excess fruit they glean into snacks for the local Boys and Girls Club.
There’s something special about biting into an apple, picked right off a tree in your backyard. Thanks to the Gleaning Abundance Project, the Boys And Girls Club Of Kamloops has been able to add some local fruit into the meals they provide the kids.
“Local fresh fruit is really good. We just got it delivered and it’s very special because it’s freshly grown and not staying in the store for like 10 years," according to McKenna Sutherland.
“One of the things we’ve tried to do over the years is provide wholesome food,” Traci Anderson, Executive Director of the Boys and Girls Club of Kamloops said.
At a certain point, the Gleaning Abundance Project picks more fruit than they’re able to give away.
“This past year, we’ve picked over 18,000 pounds of fruit, 10,000 of which has been donated,” Addie De Candole, communications coordinator for the Project explained.
Thanks to some grant money from the Maple Leaf Foundation, the Gleaning Abundance Project will start processing that fruit next summer, so instead of just fruit, they can make snacks for the kids in the club
“What we’re going to do next summer is take those dehydrated fruits and make trail mixes, make fruit leather bars with the puree that we’ve made, and we’re going to donate those snacks to the Boys and Girls Club," De Candole told CFJC Today.
For Traci Anderson: “Knowing that it’s coming right from our community, it’s being processed right here in our community, it’s coming from a really great source, it’s been amazing for us to be able to feed that to our kids. We feel really good about it.”
And if the kids in the boys and girls club program devour those snacks like they went to town on some of the fresh fruit that’s been provided by the gleaning abundance project, it’s sure to be a win for the club.
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