Picking Apples and Sharing the Harvest with Evangel Hall Mission

Well folks, it’s officially September! That means our picking team is surrounded by apples on apples on apples. We chose to celebrate this month of abundance by teaming up with one of our long-standing social service partner agencies, Evangel Hall Mission, to host a dedicated pick for their participants and staff.

About the Agency

Evangel Hall Mission (ehm, for short) is a community service agency that has supported individuals experiencing poverty, homelessness, and social isolation in Toronto for over a century! ehm’s programs include housing, dental, drop-in services, financial literacy training, spiritual care, and more!

Their vision is to support each person they serve to feel empowered and equipped to take on any challenge in life. Rooted in a non-judgmental, inclusive, and anti-oppressive framework, ehm’s services and practices seek to address the physical, mental, spiritual, and emotional aspects of a person’s well-being.

Their Residence Program provides tenants with affordable housing on location. Their building at Adelaide and Bathurst, which is where we delivered the fruit, recently celebrated its 15 year anniversary! This residence provides 84 units of safe, individual, affordable rent-geared-to-income housing units. Additionally, ehm’s Housing Help program provides support and resources for those looking to find and secure stable housing elsewhere in the city.

Friendly Faces

Our Picking Program Assistant, Molly, coordinated with ehm’s Drop-In Manager, Philomena to encourage participants and staff members to come along on an apple pick! Joining us on the apple pick were: Tammy, Josephine, and Paul. Meet them below…

Tammy is a Client Case Worker at ehm, where she has worked for the past five years. This event was her first time ever picking apples, but she breezed through this pick with ease!

Josephine is a participant of ehm’s drop-in program. She has years of experience picking fruit, both in Toronto and on farms across Ontario. Her background in agriculture certainly came in handy for this picking event!

Paul is a participant of ehm’s drop-in program, as well. This was his first time picking apples.

Capturing the Whole Harvest

Our small team picked for two hours and collected a total of 193 lbs of deliciously tart granny smith-adjacent apples! What a bounty! The homeowners were thrilled to see us harvest such a great quantity and tidy up of their backyard of fallen fruit.

“It’s great to know the apples are going to be used. You always clear and tidy up our garden. And, we get to meet different people every time! We’ve had our tree picked by NFFTT for several years. It’s a nice end-of-summer tradition for our family.” – Deborah, tree registrant.

The picking team with some of the harvest!

Transporting the Goods

After the pick was complete, we parted ways with Paul and Josie. Tammy helped us load up the NFFTT cargo bike with our overflowing bags of fresh produce and we headed to ehm’s Adelaide residence. Onwards and upwards!

Our cargo bike all packed up with nearly 200 lbs of apples and picking equipment.

Neighbours Helping Neighbours

As a quick pit stop on our way to ehm, we dropped off one bag of apples (roughly 20 lbs) to one of our partner agencies, West Neighbourhood House (Queen and Bathurst location). They were delighted to put them to good use in meals for their clients! Bags of fresh fruit were also divvied up to be dropped off later that evening at the Parkdale community fridge, run by volunteer group CFTO. You can read more about their work in our past blog post here.

Apples Arrived Safely and Securely

We owe a great big thank you to Tammy for being such a trooper and helping us navigate the busy city streets with all those apples on our bike. Upon arrival to ehm’s Adelaide Residence, we were greeted by Philomena and a volunteer to receive the donation of 4 bags of apples (roughly 80 lbs). Philomena assured us that the fruits will be used in the following day’s drop-in, and will be served fresh as well as incorporated into delicious treats by in-house staff chefs for participants to enjoy!

Delivering the fruit to Evangel Hall Mission was a success!

If you would like to learn more about the work of Evangel Hall Mission, we encourage you to visit their website.

Thank you for reading all about our latest apple picking adventure with ehm. We hope you enjoyed! We captured even more photos and videos behind-the-scenes of this pick on our Instagram story, which is saved as a highlight on our profile. Click here to watch!

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