COVID-19 Response

During humanitarian crises like these,

the need for real, sustainable solutions to hunger is as urgent as ever.

Leading Community Garden Workdays & Fresh-Produce Distributions

One of the ways we sustain families' health long-term is by providing healthy, nutritious foods to families residing in food-desert areas.

As COVID-19 has led to increased food-insecurity rates nationwide, it is critical that we continue and expand our ongoing fresh-produce distributions from our Community Gardens.

To maximize our monthly garden-yields while staying safe, we have adopted innovative ways to recruit and engage youth and family volunteers in cultivating vegetables at our Gardens. Emphasizing the need for safety precautions, such as wearing masks, we have made our monthly workdays more frequent and available for community members to attend, offering online community sign-ups for small groups of youth and community-members to work on specific days of the month.

During a time as critical as now, our emphasis on service and hunger-prevention efforts to youth is stronger than ever, as well as our continued support for local organizations serving food-insecure families.

For updates regarding future workday events, see Greenville Community Garden Facebook.

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Sustaining Families' Health During COVID-19:

Hundreds of pounds of fresh produce donated to our partnering food-distribution sites, including Hope of Glory Ministries and Joy Soup Kitchen

Expanding Partnerships

Our newest partner is Hope of Glory Ministries, to whom we have donated 35+ bikes and hundreds of lbs of vegetables.


Family / Community Sign-Ups for Workdays

Many families have signed up to attend and help at our Community Gardens on their own free time - guided and directed by the founder via online Zoom or instructions provided on online community sign-ups.

Sustaining Youth Volunteerism

Students from elementary to graduate school have regularly attended our Community Garden/Orchard workdays while maintaining safety precautions

Revitalizing Local Community Gardens

Community Gardens and Orchards provide critical services to low-income neighborhoods without access to healthy, nutritious foods:

They bridge geographic, financial, and socioeconomic barriers by providing ready access to free fresh vegetables in the local community, promoting healthy dietary options, and facilitating independence in sustaining the well-being of homes.

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The Sustainable Hunger Initiative has revitalized, established, and inspired several Community Gardens and Orchards in the greater Greenville area through youth volunteerism and partnerships. During COVID-19, we've installed pavers for one Community Garden's walkways (funded by the US Cellular Grant we received) and constructed garden beds at a local park located within low-income neighborhoods.

Direct & Continuous Food Donations

Since children are currently out of school, many families are especially dependent on food banks and pantries and need additional help now.

The Sustainable Hunger Initiative continues leading weekly pick-ups of excess food from local stores and fresh-produce distributions from our Community Gardens to benefit local organizations serving food-insecure families and individuals.

You can also donate food items to any local soup kitchen, food pantry, or organization providing necessities for families.

For children, the Food Bank of Eastern & Central NC is specifically requesting fruit cups, granola bars, mac & cheese cups, apple sauce cups, cracker snacks and juice boxes. The organization has created a safe way to accept food donations so no one has to enter the building. Drop off your donation any weekday from 8am-4pm. They are located at 1712 Union Street in Greenville, NC. Their phone number is 252-752-4996.

Weekly pickups of excess food from local SHEETZ store, provided to First Born Community Development Center in Grimesland

Sustainable Hunger Initiative Executive Director, Abby Yoon, wins US Cellular Future of Good $10,000 Grant towards non-profit organization Love A Sea Turtle

Supporting local community organizations reducing hunger

In addition to supplying donations (including food, bikes, and monetary funds) for local soup kitchens, food pantries, and organizations reducing hunger, we actively expand our partnerships and community-outreach efforts to increase collaboration, support, and thus resources in tackling hunger during these critical times.

Among the organizations, our mothering non-profit organization Love A Sea Turtle (LAST) is spearheading youth-led efforts to address urgent community needs.

Support Love A Sea Turtle with a donation. Click the PayPal link below or contact loveaseaturtle@suddenlink.net.

Love A Sea Turtle (LAST) Fitness & Nutrition Camp

We've continued our LAST summer camps for underserved youth while maintaining safety precautions, such as wearing masks. This year, we've provided cooking and nutrition classes and swimming instruction for youth from The Spot - Wilson Youth United.

Our focus for this year has been to teach youth through dynamic, experiential learning:

  • the nutritional value and health benefits of fresh produce

  • how to apply kitchen skills and prepare and enjoy healthy meal options at home

  • swimming; nurturing independence in maintaining health by staying physically active

Our goal is to equip youth with the knowledge, desire, and ability to maintain healthy dietary and fitness lifestyles throughout their lives.

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Plastic Free NC, a LAST youth-led umbrella organization raising awareness on alternatives to single-use plastics

Empowering Youth to Lead During COVID

This summer, SHI is providing a $250 Micro-Grant to a LAST youth to upstart his/her/their initiative addressing a community need this upcoming school year.

The initiative will be selected through a competition by a panel of judges including the founder on the basis of demonstrated need for funding, plan of action, and anticipated outcome.

In addition, the founder continues to lead presentations & serve as a mentor during LAST July Leadership Training Week to aid youth in developing their own leadership projects based on S.M.A.R.T.S. (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, Timely, and Sustainable) criteria.

Sparking Community Dialogue

Our Community Gardens and Orchard also serve as safe, beautiful spaces for diverse communities to converge, share, listen, learn, and ultimately heal together. Grounded in empathy, inclusivity, and unity, our Community Dialogue series are inspired and guided by the framework and tradition of the Talking Circle used by several Native American communities in North America.

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Educational Walk-In Tours

The Greenville Community Gardens and Orchard are available to anyone in the public for visiting at their own time, obtaining fresh produce, and learning about the nutritional value of the vegetables we grow through our Plant Against Disease (PAD) Signage displaying nutrition facts.

If you'd like to schedule a personal walk-in tour guided by the founder (via Zoom), please contact abbyyoon04@gmail.com.

Sustainable Hunger Initiative Virtual Food Drive

Hosting Virtual Food Drives

Created by the Food Bank of Central & Eastern NC, Virtual Food Drives allows us to serve those in need while maintaining social distancing.

Please consider visiting our Virtual Food Drive. Through the website, anyone can "purchase" fresh produce or other food items online for a cheaper price than usual, and the money is provided to the Food Bank so the organization can purchase the food and distribute it to those in need.

Interested in Starting Your Own VFD?

You can start your own Virtual Food Drive as an individual or as an organization. For more information, click here.

Now, more than ever, we need your help.