Submitted by Nicola Barnack
Director of Development
Jan. 25, 2023
Record-breaking freezes in Nassau County did not stop volunteers and homeowners from providing fresh citrus to neighbors in need. Over 15 generous homeowners invited 23 volunteers to pick surplus and fallen fruit from their trees to benefit the Barnabas nutrition programs.
“We felt blessed to pick 375 pounds of oranges, grapefruits and tangerines, and donate to Barnabas!” said Justin Rimondi, Memorial United Methodist Church’s youth director. “We consider this year’s citrus drive a success despite the freezes this month.”
Rimondi had learned about citrus drives while participating in a Feeding Northeast Florida event in Jacksonville, which sent teams of volunteers into the community to pick unwanted fruit from residential properties.
“Bringing this opportunity to Amelia Island is such a benefit for our community. It helps the donors and the mission of Barnabas and prevents waste,” he said. “We are honored to collaborate with St. Peter’s Episcopal Church and Barnabas for this bountiful gift.”
For the second year, Memorial United Methodist Church and St. Peter’s Episcopal Church worked together to sign up the homeowners who had citrus trees and the volunteers who wanted to pick the fruit. The teams of volunteers included individuals of all ages from singles to couples to families, who had a range of experiences picking fruit.
Jamie Reynolds, Barnabas President and CEO, said “We are so humbled by the support and partnerships we have with both Memorial United Methodist Church and St. Peter’s Episcopal Church. This citrus drive is one example of many neighbors helping neighbors to provide help and hope.”
The Barnabas mission is to provide help and hope to individuals and families in need throughout Nassau County, FL to improve their stability, health, and well-being. For more information, please visit www.BarnabasNassau.org