FARM TO FORK FUNDRAISER TO SUPPORT AMERICA’S GROW-A-ROW

April 9, 2014

(PITTSTOWN, NJ) ― America’s Grow-a-Row (AGAR) is a non-profit organization that grows and gleans fresh, healthy fruits and vegetables that are donated to those suffering from hunger and those living in “food deserts,” or areas that lack access to fresh, affordable produce, throughout the state of New Jersey. AGAR began in 2002 when Chip Paillex delivered 120 pounds of homegrown produce to the Flemington Area Food Pantry. Today AGAR has become New Jersey’s leading service organization dedicated to growing, gleaning, and donating fresh produce to those in need throughout the state. Last year alone, thanks to the help of more than 3,000 volunteers, AGAR donated 860,000 pounds of fruits and vegetables throughout New Jersey. Since their beginning, AGAR has donated over 2.5 million pounds – or 10 million servings – of food to our neighbors in need.

AGAR’s mission is to positively impact as many lives as possible through a volunteer effort of planting, picking, rescuing, and delivering free fresh produce. At AGAR, they:
• Provide fresh produce to those in need
• Educate people of all generations about hunger and ways to help
• Introduce our youth to farming and healthy eating
• Cultivate in tomorrow’s leaders the habit of giving back
• Contribute to the sustainability of agriculture

AGAR is hosting their Farm to Fork event on Saturday, May 10, 2014 at Life Camp in Pottersville, New Jersey and is delighted to be honoring Jerry Walker of Team Walker in Jersey City for his work and commitment to helping impoverished youth find positive solutions to the many obstacles they may face in their daily lives as well as being a partner with AGAR in feeding those in need within Jersey City. After graduating from St. Anthony High School and helping the Friars win a legendary national championship, Jerry Walker enrolled at Seton Hall University and was instrumental in helping lead the Pirates Men’s Basketball team to three trips to the NCAA Tournament. After college, Walker continued to showcase his talents professionally. He has played overseas in Spain, Turkey, France, Puerto Rico, Lithuania and in the United States. Today, Jerry provides opportunities for under privileged kids through his nonprofit organization, Team Walker. The organization was founded in 1996 by Jersey City natives Jerry and Jasper Walker, who aspired to give Jersey City children the same after school programs they enjoyed while growing up. They knew these programs helped them mature academically, and also provided them with an athletic outlet for their basketball abilities. Jerry’s goal is to uplift and create positive alternatives for the youth of Jersey City through full year programs, which enlighten the participants with the importance of solid academics, teamwork and sportsmanship. Jerry and Team Walker are proud to make a difference in the lives of children.

Congressman Leonard Lance will serve as the Keynote Speaker at Farm to Fork and will present the flag that was flown over the United States Capitol in honor of America’s Grow-a-Row. Farm to Fork is a fundraising event benefiting AGAR and features local food artisans, a farm fresh dinner and fine auctions. The goal of this event is to raise money and make a solid investment in the future of AGAR. Proceeds will help AGAR reach their 2014 goals of donating over 1 million pounds of farm-fresh food to various hunger relief agencies in New Jersey while at the same time educating people of all ages about hunger, the importance of agriculture, and healthy eating. This past summer AGAR hosted over 750 young people at their farm through their inner-city youth programs and they plan to expand this program to reach even more youth in 2014. In 2013, AGAR expanded the Free Farm Market program to include additional distributions in Newark, Camden, East Orange and Jersey City. Moving forward AGAR will expand and solidify the full-circle approach of educational presentations, Grow-Your-Row demonstrations, Free Farm Markets, Inner-City Youth Days and Recipient Volunteering. The Farm to Fork fundraiser is dedicated to celebrating the important work done by AGAR as they sow the seeds of hope, gratitude and progress for the future.

Ticket cost is $125 per person, adults only please. Neat casual attire suggested – jeans welcome! Please RSVP by April 30. To order tickets or make a tax-deductible contribution, please visit www.americasgrowarow.org/farm-to-fork/

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