Press Release:

Press Release:

Of interest to editors and journalists covering: Hunger in America, Gardening, Sustainable Communities, Food Issues and Global Warming. Additional media information is available at

Excess garden produce usually left unharvested can now be donated to neighborhood food pantries

Colorado Springs, CO – March 1, 2016
High Plains Helping Hands, Inc. is pleased to announce that it has joined the Campaign – a nationwide program to enable neighborhood food pantries to be easily located by local backyard gardeners wishing to share their excess garden bounty with neighbors in need.
With one out of six American families now relying on pantries to help feed them, the pantries often have a hard time meeting the demand.
At the same time, millions of backyard gardeners across America frequently find that their vegetable, fruit, herb and nut gardens provide far more produce than they can possibly use or share with friends. The remainder is often either left to rot in the garden or put into the trash, which contributes to pollution issues.

Gardeners who want to share part of their harvest are often unable to find local pantries because they typically do not have a yellow page listing or an Internet presence.

Food pantries almost never have access to fresh food due to the structure of the American food bank network leaving food pantry clients with access only to canned vegetables and fruit, often packaged with sugar or salt – which can contribute to long term health issues.
To address this, the web site enables food pantries to register their name, phone, address, an optional photograph of the pantry to make it easier to find, and day[s] and time[s] they can accept the gardeners produce. Gardeners and other donors also have the option of using the AmpleHarvest iPhone and Android apps available as a free downloads.

Now that High Plains Helping Hands, Inc. is a part of the Campaign, area backyard and community gardeners will be able to quickly find the pantry using the personalized driving instructions available on the site. More than 6,000 (and growing) food pantries participate nationwide.

According to founder and CNN Hero Gary Oppenheimer, “In 2007, my own garden grew more produce than we could possibly use, and I quickly found that there are only so many cucumbers you can give to friends and still have them call you a friend. Our community garden also left a lot of produce to rot on the vines. What a waste. That was when it became clear that was desperately needed”.
High Plains Helping Hands welcomes fresh produce donations for its clients. Additionally, information will be posted from time to time by the pantry on the site, listing those store bought items that are in short supply at the pantry – this to enable anyone wishing to help their neighbors in need.

About High Plains Helping Hands, Inc.
High Plains Helping Hands, Inc. is a Christian 501c3 nonprofit human services organization serving the Colorado High Plains where few resources are available. Our staff and volunteers treat everyone with respect and dignity while providing personalized support and compassion to hundreds of clients in need, many of whom are elderly, disabled, and/or unemployed. In addition to regular nutritional support through our food pantry, our agency provides prayer as requested, classes, SNAP and CSFP assistance, referrals, Christmas toys, school supplies, children’s birthday bags, newborn baby bags and special holiday food bags. For more information about how and when to donate, please contact Executive Director, David Edson at

About Inc. ( is a nationwide 501(c)3 not-for-profit anti-hunger effort, backed and supported by Google Inc, the USDA, National Gardening Association, Rotary International, Feeding America and most of America’s food banks as well as the National Council of Churches, which educates, encourages and empowers millions of growers across America to share their excess garden produce with a local food pantry.

Media Contact:
David Edson, High Plains Helping Hands, Inc., Executive Director
Phone: 719-495-3123