Seniors benefit from CSA program; fresh produce boosts health during the summer and beyond

October 20, 2015

Jimmie Scott and her husband, Benjamin, are beyond grateful for the support they have received from the Food Bank of Delaware.

The Frederica residents are senior citizens, coping with issues that face many in their age group: their income is very limited and they have serious health issues. Mrs. Scott is disabled, her husband retired with a small Social Security check, and their godson, Hassan, moved in with them.

His presence has been a godsend to them, Mrs. Scott said.

photoTheir situation became extremely challenging last winter when they had no food in the house, and they lost electricity. The Scotts found help from the Calvary Assembly of God in Dover, one of the Food Bank of Delaware’s more than 600 community partners in food distribution.

“If it hadn’t been for them, I don’t know where we would have been,” said Mrs. Scott during a phone interview.

“They set us up for the senior boxes.”

Through their eligibility for assistance, one thing led to another, and in the spring the Scotts signed up for the discounted ($20) Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program through the Food Bank of Delaware. So from mid-June to Oct. 1, the Scotts had access to fresh fruits and vegetables.

They picked up a box of seasonally fresh produce each Wednesday at the Milford branch.

Traditionally, CSA members invested in a farm during the winter and collected their produce shares weekly in the summer. The Food Bank of Delaware uses a modified CSA model to distribute fresh, locally-grown produce to everyone, regardless of income.

The contents of the package vary from week to week, depending on what is in season. In addition to receiving farm fresh produce, some shareholders also received tokens to be used around their local farmers market to purchase SNAP-approved items such as artisan bread, fresh eggs, local honey, homemade pasta and much more.

Mrs. Scott described the abundance of fresh food the family received each week.

“I need those fresh vegetables. What’s extra, we freeze for winter, the fresh limas and green beans and carrots. We love those fresh peaches, and we can’t freeze the watermelon,” she said.

“We like that we have it (fresh vegetables) all winter long. We really like that.”

For more information about the Food Bank of Delaware’s programs, visit

By Gwen Guerke, Communications Coordinator

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