Earlier this year, Lyndsay Robins launched a unique volunteer-based community program called Produce for Veterans as a beta test with her husband Joe. She created a 40'x40' trial garden in the spring whose sole purpose was to grow free fresh produce that would go to help veterans and injured soldiers in the Peterborough area.
Here's the garden in Keene as it was being created in late May...
Produce for Veterans was hatched by Robins because she always felt she wasn't paying tribute to soldiers in a way that actually had an impact.
One of the yields from the first harvest in the garden
"I wasn't paying tribute to our heroes the way they deserve, so I put my plan in action and Produce for Veterans was born," Robins tells PTBOCanada.
Fresh produce & donated carrots distributed to veterans from Produce for Veterans
"I wanted to make a difference in others lives," Robins adds. "I wanted to find a way to show my support to our veterans and their families. If I could save them and their families $10 or even $20 a week, that is money they can use for other necessities."
Robins adds that the idea first came to her a few years back when she was getting help for chronic depression.
"Gardening had not only become my own serenity but saved me at least $50 in savings a month," Robins tells PTBOCanada. "I’ve always left the mental health part out when answering why I started the initiative because it wasn’t about me anymore. At the same time, my answer was never really coming from the heart."
The bountiful yield from the garden
Robins innovative idea has changed her life and those around her, including many Peterborough Legion veterans and their families.
"We currently help approximately 30 veterans within the Kawarthas, and by next year our goal is to triple that amount by expanding in different communities," Robins tells PTBOCanada.
"One of our heroes. I love this man. He makes my day." —Lyndsay Robins
Robins tells PTBOCanada she is excited for the new expansion in the fall and next season: "I want to help as many as possible and I cannot wait until our next season. We have a planting party benefit in the works for next spring."
Produce for Veterans banner flag
To learn more about this amazing organization, follow them on Facebook. If you would like to contribute in some way whether it's extra fresh produce or volunteering, email Lyndsay here.