While this pandemic has impacted everyone’s life, the situation for the growing number of people in our community who are food insecure has become even more difficult. With unemployment claims rising sharply and families who qualify for free breakfast and lunch at school now burdened with providing 10 more meals per week for each child as long as schools remain closed, it’s no surprise that demand at our partner food pantries is way up. On top of this, the recent drop in donations of fresh produce from supermarkets to food pantries means that accessing healthy food is becoming increasingly challenging.
We are reaching out to you, our community, because we are determined to stay focused on growing fresh, healthy food – food that will be donated to food insecure neighbors through local food pantries and other sites – and we need your help to stay on track. We remain committed to our 2020 goal of increasing the area under cultivation by 30%, but as a volunteer-driven nonprofit that relies heavily on interns, WWOOFers, school groups, summer camps, and retirees, the pandemic is likely to negatively affect our ability to keep up with the field work. To compensate, we need to increase our farm staff’s hours and hire additional staff.
Unfortunately, the fundraising initiatives that could have provided funds for additional staff time have also been impacted – our business sponsorship appeal was cut short by the pandemic, and our fundraising events will need to be dramatically altered or cancelled (the one in June has already been cancelled). Because of this, we are counting on our network of financial supporters more than ever.
Checks may be made out to “Growing to Give” and mailed to 30 East Coxon Road, Brunswick, Maine, 04011. Growing to Give is a 501(c)(3) IRS public charity, so donations are tax-deductible as charitable contributions, but please check with your tax advisor for exceptions.
The recently passed stimulus package includes some incentives to donate to your favorite charities. Section 2204 entitles you to deduct up to $300 in donations from your 2020 taxable income, even if you do not itemize your taxes.