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Fruit Trees -- such a simple solution for hunger
The Fruit Tree Planting Foundation in San Diego has a simple solution for a global need. Fruit. Fresh, off the tree, wholesome, organic fruit.
Whether the fruit-eaters are children, animals or impoverished neighbors -- fruit trees take advantage of Mother Nature's natural resources system...and deliver shade, soil conditioning, food for wildlife...and food for humans and our animals. And it lasts for decades! That's a lot for one simple plant to gift us with.
FTPF recently launched a program called "Fruit Tree 101 which involves orchard donations to public schools in low-income areas to provide generations of students and teachers with healthy nutrition options and environmental education opportunities. In the summer of 2006, with generous support from Starbucks Coffee, FTPF donated and planted a series of orchards at Southern California schools, including the Rialto Unified School District and the National School District. Students and teachers participated in the plantings, with FTPF leading discussions about environmental concepts with many enthusiastic children!
At several schools, the orchards will serve as outdoor classrooms, where students will meet every week to learn about botany, ecology, and sustainability. When the trees are fruiting, students will gain valuable experience working with charities by donating the harvest to local food banks. A school district official wrote that they expect the orchards "…to last for decades, giving our students the opportunity to receive environmental education that would not otherwise be available to them."
Additional programs by The Fruit Tree Planting Foundation include:
Orchards for AnimalsFTPF’s “Orchards for Animals” program improves lives for rescued animals on sanctuaries by providing fruit trees for shade, shelter, enrichment, and healthy diets. When the trees mature, animals are able to enjoy delicious fruits and foraging opportunities. During times of extreme heat or precipitation, animals can seek shade and shelter under the trees without being away from their food source. Fruit trees allow for the most natural diet available to animals, plucked fresh off the tree with no chemicals or pesticides.
Fruit ReliefThe Fruit Relief program involves strategically planting fruit trees in areas where the harvest will most benefit hungry, poor, and needy people—such as homeless shelters, low-income communities, and international hunger relief sites. As a result of our orchard donations, life-saving nutrition is provided for decades to follow and local volunteers, many of whom are in difficult situations themselves, are empowered to take action for their environment.
Roots of RecoveryThe Roots of Recovery program donates fruit tree orchards to facilities where the harvest will help patients and residents with healing—places such as drug rehabs, hospitals, and health centers. Scientific studies confirm that a diet of fruits and vegetables improves health and reduces the risks of leading killers such as heart disease and cancers. For those in recovery, there is no substitute for fresh produce grown with love, compassion, and without harm to the environment.
Reservation PreservationThe Reservation Preservation program provides fruit and nut tree orchards to low-income communities on Native American Indian Reservations. The harvest not only provides healthy nutrition, but also a potential source of income. Orchards last for generations are donated strictly for the benefit of the community.