That coyotes and other critters had eaten much of the corn, along with the late planting due to an excess of rain, and poor seed, resulted in a severely reduced amount of corn available to harvest this year.
Nonetheless, a small crew of volunteers showed up at the field July 14 to harvest what corn was there and distribute it to those in need. Although the temperature was mild when they began, the field was wet and muddy due to irrigation sprinklers, but nearly a pickup bed of corn was harvested and distributed.
Packing and distribution of over 2,000 boxes of vegetables–each with a spiritual message–at three boxing sites simultaneously, helped feed the hungry in our region, not only physically, but spiritually.
The boxing sites–Bethany Christian Church, Arapahoe; One Harbor Church, Havelock; and Religious Community Services, New Bern–used many volunteers in an assembly line production to pack and seal the boxes and stack them for pickup by other volunteers from churches and other organizations, who distributed them to those in need.
Mac Harris, Vickie Moseley-Jones and Torrie Osgood represented Operation Veggie Box at Pamlico Community College’s second-annual Non-Profit Appreciation breakfast.
Harris explained to those at the breakfast the mission of OVB, and invited any who had questions about the organization, or who wanted to volunteer, to contact OVB through the college’s non-profit directory, of to come to a meeting.
The first order of the event was general meeting and greeting members of other non-profits, followed by a breakfast catered by Brantley’s Restaurant. After breakfast, non-profit
representatives were invited to speak to the group briefly, explaining the missions and programs of their organizations.
The event began at 7:30 AM, and ended at 11:30 AM.
WNCT-9 and WCTI-12 both aired stories of the planting at OVB Garden Camp Seafarer last Friday. Ellen Bacca, Channel 12 meteorologist, and Maria Satira, Channel 9 weekend anchor, both covered the event and filed on-air and website stories with video footage.
To view their stories, click on the link to the left to the OVB Facebook page, or find them on the links at left to the stations’ websites.
Between March 14 and March 22, six of the seven Operation Veggie Box (OVB) spring gardens were planted with cabbage and lettuce. Each of those gardens now has 500 cabbage plants and 100 lettuce plants.
The youth of Bethany Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), Arapahoe, planted 900 cabbage plants and 200 lettuce plants in OVB Gardens Bethany #1 and #2 March 14. On March 22, Bethany adult volunteers planted the remaining 100 cabbage plants in OVB Garden Bethany #2 and 500 cabbage plants plus 100 lettuce plants in OVB Garden Bethany #3.
Ninth-grade students at Arapahoe Charter School planted the OVB Garden ACS the morning of March 21, while volunteers from Camp Seafarer, Camp Sea Gull, Silver Hill Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), Arapahoe Free Will Baptist Church, Arapahoe United Methodist Church, Bethany and others from the Pamlico County community planted the OVB Garden Camp Seafarer.
The following day volunteers from the Vandemere community planted the OVB Garden Vandemere.
OVB Garden Meals on Wheels at the county Senior Citizens Center had been scheduled for planting March 22 as well, but the wet conditions there required a postponement until March 29.
The cabbage and lettuce planted can survive in cold weather conditions, but other vegetables not as cold tolerant will be planted after the threat of frost has passed in mid-April.
Produce from the seven OVB gardens will be delivered at harvest to Fishes and Loaves food pantry in Oriental, Religious Community Services food pantry and soup kitchen in New Bern, Havelock/Cherry Point Ministerial Outreach food pantry, and the newly established Reelsboro United Christian Services (RUCS) food pantry.
Building on ideas discussed at the Forum on Hunger Jan. 25, representatives of Reelsboro area churches March 5 established an interdenominational support group called Reelsboro United Christian Services (RUCS) that will collaborate facilitating Christian community activities. Participating churches at the initial meeting were New Hope Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), Reelsboro Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and Reelsboro United Methodist Church.
The group set two objectives: Sharing the love of Christ by establishing a community food pantry that will help alleviate hunger in the western part of Pamlico County, and promoting community events that encourage interdenominational cooperation to draw families into Christian fellowship.
RUCS will partner with the Food Bank of Central and Eastern N.C. (New Bern Branch) to establish the food pantry for which Reelsboro United Methodist Church will be the distribution facility. The pantry will provide supplemental food monthly to referred families. The Operation Veggie Box Garden Camp Seafarer will supply fresh produce to RUCS.
The group also will promote other outreach ministries and activities that will positively impact the lives of all in the area.
Representatives from other area churches are invited to join RUCS in the establishment and operation of the food pantry, and may learn more by contacting Reelsboro United Methodist Church at 252-745-3266.
Buck Jones fertilized and rowed up the three OVB gardens on River Road this morning just ahead of the predicted inclement weather.
After the storm, the state of the gardens will be assessed. They may need to be drained to the ditch and/or rowed up again.
But thanks to Don Lee Farms, Inc. and Neuse River Turf Farm, we are moving ahead to planting cabbage at 8 A.M. Saturday, March 22. Please mark that date on your calendar and plan to be part of the fun!
Spring is here and OVB is getting ready for planting!
By March 22 Operation Veggie Box and its partner churches and organizations will have planted 5 to 7 gardens in Pamlico County. Vegetables from these gardens will go to food pantries in Oriental, Reelsboro, New Bern, and Havelock. OVB is now realizing growth in its core ministry activities.
We are hoping to produce over 3,000 pounds of vegetables per garden at a delivered cost of $.10 per pound. Our standard garden size is 10 rows, each 100 feet long. If we are able to produce this amount we will increase our yield by over 75% over our fall 2013 garden and reduce the cost by over 50%.
There will be much more to come this year including our Veggie JAM!, Corn JAM!, and more.
Now that Operation Veggie Box is on Facebook and Twitter, please like us on those media to help our ministry become better known on the web! And be sure to follow us by clicking on the green follow link.
Operation Veggie Box (OVB) is a Christian mission to grow fresh vegetables to give to the hungry, as well as to deliver spiritual messages announcing the Good News of Jesus Christ and the existence of the Holy Spirit. OVB was launched at Bethany Christian Church Arapahoe, NC in August, 2013.
OVB is a front line Christian ministry that actively seeks to find those who are separated from God and make an attempt to bring them back in touch with Him.
Our concept of operations is simple enough: Grow vegetables, harvest them and place them in a box with a spiritual message, and then distribute to a hungry person through an existing relief agency.
We are looking to grow this ministry by getting other churches and organizations to grow gardens using our standard garden production model. Our garden size is the same which is ten 100’ long rows 30” apart. The vegetables that are grown in them are the same, also. We believe that if we standardize on the production side that cost and labor efficiencies will be realized resulting is less impact on church budget dollars. We also partner with existing relief agencies and churches and ask that they do the distribution function.
In 2014, OVB is starting to see growth in its garden ministry with new churches and organizations saying that they want to grow OVB gardens. OVB also has some unique events that will occur in June 2014 and they are called Veggie JAM! and Corn JAM!. These are outreach activities that will involve churches from eastern North Carolina delivering fresh vegetables to the hungry. More to come on these events later, but for now navigate through our website and take a look at some pictures from our Fall 2013 garden. If you have any questions feel free to give me, David Bailey, a call at 252.229.6228.