When Food Bank of Nevada County Founder, Toni Thompson, started the Food Bank, she had a dream of being able to provide fresh fruits and vegetables to her clients. In April of 2011, Thompson launched The Healthy Harvest Project and the Food Bank garden was born. Current Garden Coordinator, Sean Sulivan, says it was a true community effort.
The land was donated by John and Becky Olson, then owners of Gold and Green Equipment Rentals on Railroad Avenue. A substantial anonymous donation, along with multiple donations from local businesses, and a lot of sweat equity went into the garden. On Saturday, as part of the Nevada County Farm Trail Celebration, Sullivan says the Garden was officially dedicated in memory of Toni Thompson.
Sullivan says the garden produces between four and six hundred pounds of food per week. The majority of the garden food goes towards a lunch program for children that do not have acess to school lunches during the summer. Toni Thompson passed away earlier this year, the Food bank is now run by her son John Candelaria.