With the shutdown due to COVID, we found all of our spring seed distro events cancelled. However, access to seed seemed more important than ever with many seed companies closed or experiencing low inventory/delay in shipping due to a surge in orders. We initially offered a fundraiser-for $35 we would ship 20 packs of seed with $5 covering shipping and paypal fees, and the $30 going toward grocery gift cards which were picked up by Head Start staff and delivered to their most critical families. A few days later, we opened our little self serve roadside stand with free seeds-we do this each year and typically distribute around 300 packages. We also offered to ship 20 packs of seeds to those who could not pick up for the $5 cost of shipping. In under two weeks, we were able to distribute 7000 packages of seed.
You can read more about our program below, but spoiler...we have no outside funding and all the labor and costs in growing/packaging/distributing the seeds comes from farm residents. If you have the means, we would greatly appreciate a donation to help us continue this good work. Any donations would go toward packaging materials and supplies-all of the labor will continue to be provided by volunteers. Thank you for your support! And thanks to all the folks who use the seed to grow healthy, organic food!
One of our primary endeavors is our Seed Distro project. This project began around 2005, when we packaged up some of our homegrown seeds to share at the Okanogan Family Faire. It was such a success that we continued to grow and package seed, expanding our project and reach.
Over the years, our program as expanded. We now grow, package, and distribute around 10k packages of heirloom, open pollinated, organic seed at no charge each year. We mostly work with food banks, schools, community gardens, and low income households, but really...anyone can request some free seed for their project.
People often ask us why we don't sell our seed? Basically, we just want more people to grow their own food. We want organizations to help people learn to grow food and provide garden space for people who have none. We want heirloom varieties to be preserved, and to encourage species diversity for the health of our planet and people. So, we give our seed away to those who need it and will make use of it.
Our budget is tiny, and we stretch every penny and rely entirely on volunteers for all of the work. Currently, about 10% of our budget comes from outside donations (most funding comes from our residents) but we'd love to have more help with this project. If you'd like to make a monetary donation, please visit the support page. We also use the income from our online shop to help fund the seed distro, so your purchase goes to a great cause!
You can check out a little video about our project here-it's a bit old, but still worth watching.