Arapahoe, Pamlico County -

Churches in Pamlico County have a fresh approach for feeding the hungry this summer - it's called "Operation Veggie Box." The program hopes to donate around 15,000 pounds of fresh vegetables to local food pantries this year in Oriental, Havelock and New Bern

This week, volunteers are planting crops in seven gardens across Pamlico County. Three are off River Road, one is at Camp Seafarer, another is at Vandemere, the sixth is at Arapahoe Charter School and the last one is at Pamlico County Senior Services.  Right now, volunteers are planting early-season crops like lettuce and cabbage.

Organizer David Bailey says just one garden last year yielded 1,700 pounds of fresh vegetables.

"If we can get other churches in the area to help out, we are talking in the next year or two 40,000 to 50,000 pounds of fresh vegetables," says Bailey.

Bailey says after the veggies are harvested, they will be packaged in a box with a message about Jesus and handed out by local food pantries. He says it is similar to the well-known ministry "Operation Christmas Child."

For details on how to get involved in Operation Veggie Box, contact David Bailey at dkbailey1@aol.com.