Local greenhouse collecting food for charity next week

The Rustic Rose Greenhouse and Floral in Spring Valley will join florists across central United States to gather food for those in need the week of Nov. 11 to 16.

Dubbed Caring Rose Week, the stores are deeply discounting bouquets of one dozen roses and accepting canned goods as partial payment.

Florists in each community designate a food-distribution charity in their area. The canned goods collected are distributed to feed those within the community whom cannot otherwise meet their nutritional needs. Coming at the onset of seasonally cold weather, the program helps food-distribution programs when families begin to experience the greatest financial pressure.

Now in its 21st year, Caring Rose Week has distributed over one-half million pounds of food since its inception. The concept is the brainchild of Harry Whelden, general manager of North American Wholesale Florists in Sioux Falls.

“Almost 250 flower shops across the Great Plains are taking the time and energy to help meet this need, and I’m truly grateful,” said Whelden. “While many are buying toys and other Christmas gifts, many across America are without food.”

National Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week sponsored by the National Coalition for the Homeless and the National Student Campaign Against Hunger & Homelessness takes place each year one week before Thanksgiving.

For more information about National Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week, see the National Coalition for the Homeless website: http://www.nationalhomeless.org