Discussions > Helping the Hungry in Orange County, California

On our final day on this earth, and as many days before then as possible, we are working to feed needy people in Orange County by running the O.C. Harvest Program through Second Harvest Food Bank. O.C. Harvest farms 8 acres of land in Irvine. We grow organic produce year round, utilizing volunteers to pick the crops. The produce is then distributed to over 300 nonprofit organizations, such as soup kitchens, churches, battered women's shelters, children's after school programs, and senior centers, to help needy people in Orange County. The program is also one of the few in Orange County that allows volunteers of all ages to participate. We often have Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, and school classes as volunteers to instill in them at a young age the value of helping those in need. Our wish would be for more funding so that we could better maintain the acreage we currently have (organic methods are labor intensive) and perhaps even obtain other land. The land is the easy part; maintaining it is what takes time and money.

The website for Second Harvest Food Bank is http://feedoc.org. Donations given through this site should identify O.C. Harvest so that we'll be sure to receive the assistance we need. Thanks!

If you are unable to donate money and live in the Irvine area, you are more than welcome to drop by the Incredible Edible Park on Harvard Street near the railroad tracks to pull a few weeds.

August 28, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSam & Linda Caruthers

Kids of all ages, singles and families, schools, church groups, youth clubs and corporate volunteers can help us plant, weed and harvest at the Incredible Edible Park in Irvine, every week.

• Tuesdays and Fridays from 9-11, groups of up to 40.
• Thursdays from 3:15-4:30, groups of up to 15.
• Saturdays and Sundays, twice a month, from 9-11, groups of up to 20.

Depending on the season, you’ll be planting seeds or smaller plants, picking weeds, or harvesting broccoli, carrots, onions, strawberries, cabbage, chili peppers, green beans, watermelons and pumpkins. Occasionally, we harvest lemons and oranges from the citrus groves of the Centennial Museum in Santa Ana.

Please call our Volunteer Office to schedule your group or sign up individually at 949 653-2900. Sorry, we can not schedule through email.


August 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterHarvesting Volunteers

Fantastic! Happy to hear that the OC has some designated farmland to use for charity, I had no idea! What a great learning experience your operation could provide for school aged children. The mutual benefit of partnering with elementary schools and opening your fields to energy filled youngsters to “work,” and learn about farming/nutrition/charity and “whole foods,” would be of great value for the future.

August 30, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterErica

Lived in OC for 36 years and did't know about the "Incredible Edible Park" great idea. I look forward to visit the park and bring the grand-kids to volunteer.


August 30, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMarc

I didn't know that either. It's amazing how we often overlook tremendous opportunities in our own back yard.

September 2, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJoe

Shift of our focus with the infrastructure stimulus spending on project like the Incredible Edible Park to feed, educate and promote sustainable living.

"Part of the sustainable living and slow food movements is a focus on buying local, non-processed products. Buying locally means that produce is picked ripe which means that it’s bursting with flavor.

Sustainable living is based on nothing more than recognizing that Earth’s bountiful resources have sustained us. In gratitude, our choices in how to live need to sustain the Earth for those who come after us." Gratitude for Being Sustained

September 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMarc

I enjoyed harvesting string beans there with my South Orange County PR Group a few months back. I have never pulled so many weeds in my life! This is an excellent use of open space!

October 6, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterDoug Fleischli