MADCAAP's massive garden for the needy - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

MADCAAP's massive garden for the needy

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MADISON COUNTY, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

It's summer and people love to have fresh vegetables on the table.

Unfortunately, too many can't afford to buy them.

That's where "Madison Countians Allied Against Poverty" are making a difference.

Call it the garden of Madison County, an oasis in Canton.

After months of planning MADCAAP'S massive garden is producing a bountiful harvest.

Food grown here is given away to those who qualify.

The need is great.

Some 3,000 people living below the poverty level are MADCAAP clients.

Judy Miller serves as the executive assistant coordinator of the garden.

"I hear they line up at your door," Miller said. "They do on Monday mornings. We have a line that goes around the building and we usually are not able to feed everybody that comes and lines up."

Carolyn Rainey volunteers and is a client.

Taking it upon herself to help break the cycle of poverty.

"A blessing, first of all I like being here," Rainey said. "I thank God I'm able to be here and I have learned and experienced plenty of things I didn't know that I know now."

Shirley Bennett spends a lot of time in this Canton vegetable garden, it's way to help her five children and grandchild, a way to help her neighbors in the same plight.

"It makes a great difference," Bennett said. "It makes a difference to me and other people too. We give out boxes on Monday and put vegetables in it."

Many of those receiving food on weekly are handicapped or elderly.

Some have small children.

Monday, 73 families stood in line eager to take home fresh squash, tomatoes, okra, cucumbers or zucchini for supper.

"It's good that we can offer somebody something other than friend foods, or fatty things or bread or things that don't really give them a lot of nutritional value volunteers are charitable with their time," Miller said.

Carole Mains spends her time weeding with her husband and help keep the grounds mowed and watered.

"It brings us joy, we enjoy doing it. We enjoy helping other people," Mains said. "When you see the looks, the smiles on the faces of the people who receive the vegetables it makes it all worth while. It's a labor of love."

With the unfortunate combination of poverty and skyrocketing chronic illnesses, MADCAAP  hope to make a small difference through nutrition with their garden of hope and a basket helping hand to those truly in need.

For more information on volunteering or making a donation, follow the link to MADCAAP under "Also on the Web".

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