Dave and Cheryl's Story

Dave and Cheryl's Story

Dave and Cheryl have been married for over 20 years. During their time together, they’ve experienced things most couples have: good times, bad times, and moments that have tested their confidence in their abilities to provide for themselves.

“We’ve used Kalamazoo Loaves & Fishes a few times over the years,” said Cheryl when asked if they ever struggled to put food on the table. “It’s certainly humbling to ask for help, but sometimes a dose of humble is what we all need to grow.”

The couple agreed in unison that they’re hard-working and do everything they can to provide for themselves. Perhaps that’s why when the Kalamazoo Valley Growers Co-op and KLF teamed up to offer free fruit and vegetable seeds and seedlings to clients last spring, they loaded up their car and got to work building a garden.

“We always had a little of this and that in pots out back,” shared Dave, “but we never tried to grow a lot of food at once.”

When the couple looked at their under-utilized backyard, they decided to dig it up to make room for tomatoes, cucumbers, squash, and more. With regular weeding, watering and care, the duo managed to harvest pounds and pounds of fresh produce to enjoy from the vine, put away for eating later, and even donate back to KLF.

Cheryl was beaming as she hauled boxes of tomatoes, cucumbers and peppers through KLF’s food donation door to donate to those experiencing hunger. “We just have too much,” she said with a satisfied look on her face. “We felt it was only right to donate what we can’t use back to those who are in a similar situation we’ve found ourselves in the past.”

We’re so pleased Dave and Cheryl were able to bolster their own food security through gardening, but their success was made that much more special by their contribution to those experiencing hunger who may have lack of access to fresh food.