July 19, 2012 at 4:13 PM CDT - Updated June 28 at 1:00 AM
KENNETT, MO (KAIT) - Kennett residents are reaping huge benefits from the Kennett Community Garden that launched January 2012.
The five-acre garden was made possible solely through donations and volunteers.
"There's been green peppers, okra, purple hull peas, squash, corn, jalapeno peppers, green beans," said volunteer board member Shawnee Trowbridge.
All of the vegetables are free to the community.
Trowbridge said volunteers have been able to deliver truckloads of food to several organizations in the city for more than a month.
"Everyone that comes and works, it's all volunteer hours, and we keep track of it. The probation and parole office has sent over people that need community service hours, and they've worked in the field."
Joshua Decker is part of the probation and parole program.Decker said he does not mind the tiring work of picking and delivering crops because it helping others.
"We pass it out to a lot of the community as in nursing homes, the helping hand, the food voucher, just about for anybody in the community to come out and pick."
He also brought his children along.
"For the kids it's more of structure, letting them know you always ain't got to work for money, hat sometimes it's for a good cause."
The vegetables are delivered to organizations and individuals.
"There have been donations made to all of the area nursing homes, the residential care facilities have accepted donations, the group homes," Trowbridge said.
She is impressed with the potpourri of volunteers who are working together to feed the city.
"You've seen everything from people who are on probation and parole, small children, attorneys, doctors, every sector of our community has come out and volunteered."
The only catch attached to the Kennett Community Garden is that people who pick have to pay it forward.
"If you come and pick a pepper for your family, you pick a pepper for someone else's family, and there's blue flats stacked over here so that when you pick whatever you want, you can take home, as long as you pick one for another family and leave it so it can be delivered to people in need."
To find out how to make a donation to the Kennett Community Garden contact the Dunklin County Caring Council at (573) 717-1158 or click here to visit the Facebook page.