Brad and Lynn Ohrt of Reinbeck participate in Harvest of Hope

Grundy Co. farmers support annual mission to alleviate world hunger

Harvest of Hope continued its 19th year of helping alleviate world hunger. A total of $16,000.00 was sent to Growing Hope Globally for 2023 to support projects in Paraguay and Kenya.

Three area churches participate in the growing project including South Waterloo Church of the Brethren of Waterloo, St Timothy Lutheran and Zion Lutheran of Hudson. Local participating farmers include Brad and Lynn Ohrt of Reinbeck, BarLee Farms, Ltd., Rousselow Bros., and Kevin and Diane Sittig of Waterloo.

Over the past 18 years this local growing project has raised $422,660.00. These dollars have helped almost 7700 people move toward food security in the past nineteen years. It costs $55.00 for someone involved in one of the Growing Hope programs to become food secure.

More than 735 million people in this world do not have enough to eat.

Four out of five of the world’s poor live in rural areas and depend on farming to feed their


The Gran Chaco region in Paraguay is in the heart of South America. It is the biggest forest reserve on the continent after the Amazon and one of the largest dry forests in the world. A major ecosystem, it is also a region with great cultural diversity. The purpose of this three‐year program is to create durable improvements in the areas of access to water, food security, community development and organization. The program provides technical assistance in family and community farming and livestock, community capacity‐building and supporting indigenous‐led advocacy.

The Kenya West Pokot program seeks to empower vulnerable women by training and supporting them to engage in sustainable livelihood activities such as tailoring, hairdressing, organic farming, tree planting, beekeeping, self-help group savings and credit management activities, as well as in cluster level associations that bring together self-help groups to address social and environmental needs of the community beyond the group members. The women are also encouraged to engage in activities that support their spiritual and mental wellbeing.

Founded in 1999 as Foods Resource Bank, Growing Hope Globally started when Ohio Farmers Vernon and Carol Sloan invited their neighbors to become part of the solution to world hunger. That seed of an idea has blossomed into a network of community Growing Projects in more than 20 states. Together over 2 million people have been empowered to help themselves become food secure.

The agricultural development programs supported by Growing Hope Globally create a lasting impact by addressing the root causes of hunger. This includes training on improved farming practices, hygiene and nutrition; providing access to land and clean water; and providing women’s empowerment and leadership opportunities. These programs serve all people regardless of race, gender, belief, nationality, ethnic origin, or political persuasion.

For more information on Growing Hope Globally, visit growinghopeglobally.org or the South Waterloo Church of the Brethren – 319-232-3125.