Thursday, March 4, 2010


The Gardening Volunteer: Spreading beauty

Drive by Winnipeg Harvest slowly and take in the beauty of the flower garden in front of our buildings. Their beauty is nurtured by Pauline Johnson, a volunteer at Harvest who spends every Thursday here. She gardens and she assembles food orders for various food banks around Winnipeg.

Pauline started volunteering at Harvest about three years ago and soon became a regular fixture on Thursdays. She's a friendly order picker with a no-nonsense approach to her work. You know that any pallet with food on it that has been wrapped and labeled by Pauline will arrive at it's destination complete and in good order.

Pauline decided to volunteer at Winnipeg Harvest when she moved into the neighbourhood. She said, “I had volunteered at Agape Table, a food bank in Winnipeg, and felt strongly that I should continue to contribute in some way. Winnipeg Harvest is a great place to volunteer and I feel strongly about poverty and homelessness. I don't understand how, in a country like Canada, people can be hungry and without a home. I want to do anything I can to help out.”

The flower garden in front of Harvest is a product of much love and enjoyment. The patch of dirt was not being used for much besides a wild rose bush that Gary, Harvest's volunteer coordinator, had planted. Pauline was chatting with Gary one day and volunteered to work with the patch. “My yard is very shaded and doesn't grow much. I thought, any sunny place that I can dig my hands into would be great. I couldn't leave the rose bush out there all by itself.” The result is a beautiful flower garden for all to enjoy.

Pauline speaks enthusiastically about Winnipeg Harvest. “Harvest is a wonderful organization with lots of great people. I'm not a morning person, but every Thursday I can't resist getting up early to come to Harvest and work in the garden and the warehouse. So many people from every walk of life get an opportunity to contribute their best here at Harvest. I would encourage more people to come and give of your time, skill and money. Every gift is welcome here at Harvest.”

Thanks a lot, Pauline, for being an enthusiastic volunteer here at Winnipeg Harvest. The flower garden is gorgeous and the warehouse is a welcome place because of your smile.
Robb Nickel, August 2008

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