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Fruit Share program inspires volunteers

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I’ve been writing about Fruit Share in this column for several years now, because it is just such a great concept — homeowners have more fruit in their back yard than they can use, so volunteers come in, pick the fruit, share it with the homeowner, and also donate some to charity.

Have you ever wondered what motivates those intrepid volunteers to climb trees, risk their necks on ladders, and finally clean up all the rotten, fallen fruit at the end of the day?

I interviewed one very dedicated volunteer, the poet Ariel Gordon. Here are some highlights of our conversation, which included her delightful eight-year-old daughter. You can read the full interview on the blog at fruitshare.ca, where you can also sign up to pick fruit, or to have volunteers come and pick yours!

Ariel is a dedicated Fruit Share volunteer. She says she has been to almost every kind of pick — grapes, chokecherries, cherries, pears, vegetables ("That was astounding and different. You know how cucumbers become all orange and bloated when they’re overripe? It’s so funny! There were these weird orange globes on the ground."), And, of course, lots of apples ("And crabapples!" her daughter chimes in).

Ariel says it’s good for people to spend time in trees, with their arms stretched over their heads. Reaching, you get sweaty and scratched up and hit on the head by apples but it feels so good for you.

Her own city garden is shady but she says a true Winnipegger is a scavenger — she loves garage sales, second-hand shops, and Fruit Share. She loves to think of all the food going back into circulation instead of being wasted.

Ariel is very glad that Fruit Share exists, and loves to tell people about it.

She takes beautiful pictures and shares them on Facebook and on her blog, encouraging others to participate as well: "You can do this, too!"

Hadass Eviatar is a community correspondent for West Kildonan. Check out her blog at: http://hadasseviatar.com/blog/

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