Farm to Family helps alleviate financial crisis for working individuals and families in Greater Hartford by providing a variety of short-term services and programs to move them towards long-term stability.
Gifts of Love provides assistance to working individuals and families experiencing a temporary financial crisis so they can achieve or maintain self-sufficiency. We accomplish this by providing basic needs-food, clothing furniture, household items, heating assistance – and offering life-skill educational programs. Through the Community Farm of Simsbury’s farm-based educational programs we educate the community about food systems, hunger, sustainable farming, sound nutritional choices and healthy lifestyles.
In September 1989, several Simsbury residents collaborated to help families who were experiencing financial difficulty due to corporate downsizing by providing them with groceries. This simple act of kindness resulted in word spreading throughout the community about how a little gesture could positively impact the lives of neighbors in need. The concept of generosity and kindness from neighbor to neighbor and family to family grew into Gifts of Love.
Twenty-nine years later, Gifts of Love continues to be devoted to the needs of the community and responds to the needs of individuals and families who have been impacted by a financial crisis through the distribution of food, clothing, household necessities, furniture, and financial planning and self-sufficiency consultation.
Community Farm of Simsbury is a certified-organic educational farm. Amos Eno donated the 140-acre property to the Town of Simsbury in 1883 for the “benefit of the town poor.” In Fall 2009, Community Farm of Simsbury was established as a 501(c)3 organization dedicated to educational programming and growing produce for donation to people in need. In 2013, Community Farm of Simsbury engaged 2,645 students from throughout Greater Hartford in inter-district, educational programming and donated 15,430 pounds of produce to local food pantries and social service organizations, including Gifts of Love, Granby Community Kitchen, Hartford Billings Forge, Hartford Food System, Hartford Public Schools, and Arc of Farmington Valley.
In December 2013, Gifts of Love and Community Farm of Simsbury merged. The organization primarily serves individuals and families facing a financial crisis due to reduced work hours, illness, divorce, death of a spouse/mate, exiting an abusive relationship, or a significant unexpected increase in expenses. By helping clients meet their most basic needs through food – including fresh produce from Community Farm of Simsbury, clothing, housewares, linens, furniture, and financial planning and self-sufficiency consultation, Gifts of Love and Community Farm of Simsbury enable them to divert their income to necessities such as rent/mortgage, heat, debt reduction, medications/medical bills, and the like and regain their financial independence.