September 6, 2020
Last week, members of our family foundation had the pleasure of touring a hidden gem in our community; Helen's Acres. During the visit, our foundation president, Ken, and his wife Linda, were joined by the foundations Executive Director, Keith Brewster to see the facility in action and hear the incredible things they are doing to help our community.
Helen's Acres is a small, charitable initiative that seeks to fill various gaps in our community by empowering volunteers, collaboration, and sustainability in terms of farming and relationships.
Located just off of Benvoulin Road, Helen's Acres is a beautiful 15 acre property that incorporates sustainable farming practices in order to provide food for various organizations and non-profits within our community. Recipients of their farming program include, but are not limited to, Kelowna Gospel Mission, Now Canada, Karis Support Society, UBC Okanagan, Central Okanagan Food Bank, and Metro Church.
In addition to providing countless thousands of tonnes of food which help the aforementioned non-profits serve fresh produce year round to their clientele/patrons, Helen's Acres also incorporates community involvement and volunteerism into their fabric. Specifically, they open their doors (or farm gates in this instance) to various organizations within our community to help them farm and harvest their land in exchange for food and goods in return.
This reciprocal approach allows the various non-profit organizations and the people they serve to not only benefit from nutritional bounty Helen's Acres provides, but also serves as a safe space for many individuals to escape from their stressors and circumstances and return to nature. Many refer to Helen's Acres as a form of therapeutic farming that has helped save them from their vices and provide stability in an otherwise turbulent reality.
Last week when we toured their facility, we were overwhelmed. They have taken community farming and intertwined reciprocal sustainability to create a truly unique approach to community development, food scarcity, and addiction recovery. As a family, we are honoured to have been have been able to help them build a refrigeration cooler to keep their produce fresh year round. We greatly look forward to working together in the future to build innovative approaches to help even more people in our community.
If you’d like to learn how you can become more directly involved, please visit The Helen's Acres Facebook page at;