A Delicious Mission: The Euclid Fruit Harvest Project
Apples and pears abound in Euclid, and the Euclid Fruit Harvest Project people want to be sure that this delicious fruit goes to people not just our furry friends in nature. The mission of the Euclid Fruit Harvest Project is to locate abandoned or underutilized fruit trees that have edible fruit, harvest the fruit with volunteers, and donate the fruit to community organizations.
Of the 1149 pounds of fruit that was harvested so far this season, 795 pounds of fruit was donated to the Euclid Hunger Center, East Shore Church’s Soup’s On meal, and a local women’s shelter. The volunteer pickers took home the remaining good fruit to eat, cook, and preserve. Unusable fruit that was gathered from beneath the trees was taken to the Memorial Park Community Garden’s compost pile.
It started with a single pear tree in a Waterloo backyard three years ago and this year 20 volunteers harvested from 10 sites (some twice) that included trees at abandoned homes, front and backyards with owners’ permission, and even a great tasting apple tree at a local fast food restaurant. Volunteer pickers’ keen eyes spot trees during their neighborhood commutes and hand out postcards to invite homeowners to participate with our harvests.
We’ve had great support from Nicole Wright of OSU Extension with equipment and publicity. Memorial Park Community Gardeners have joined us as great fruit-finders and pickers and our mission is realized through the awareness and permission of the area fruit tree owners. If you have a tree at your home, have knowledge of a possible source, or would like to join us, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 440-941-4620 and leave a message. Fruit tree care education, food preservation techniques, and increased gleaning in our community are future goals for the Euclid Fruit Harvest Project.
I am a retired (30 yrs. Mentor High School) Family and Consumer Science (home ec) teacher. In my retirement - I am co-founder and the assistant director at Kiddie City Child Care Community, founder of The E. 200th Street Stroll, and chairperson of The Playground Express Infant/Toddler Playground Project in Euclid's Memorial Park.