We are a small Episcopal Church on the banks of the Rappahannock in Port Royal, Virginia. We acknowledge that we gather on the traditional land of the first people of Port Royal, the Nandtaughtacund, who are still here, and we honor with gratitude the land itself and the life of the Rappahannock Tribe. Our mission statement is to do God’s Will in all that we do.

The Village Harvest rallies, Dec. 20 2023

We had 112 people to receive food, the largest monthly number in almost two years (since Jan. 2022 with 115). It was reported, there were more shoppers from Port Royal itself and fewer from King George. We also serve Esssex and Westmoreland counties.

We had 1,343 pounds which was just under the largest delivery of the year (April, 2023, 1,365 pounds). Included were 398 pounds of meat, including 35 chickens, one to a family for Christmas which is 33% of the harvest (see photo). The rest of the harvest is grocery 51% and produce 17%. There are a number of apple-related products from the fruit to apple sauce.

The photo shows the items unloaded from the truck – apples, tomatoes, and boxed items from Food Lion which includes tomato sauce, corn, spaghetti and macaroni. Separately we have frozen green beans.

For the year, we recovered from a slow 1st quarter, 2023 and ended the year serving 1,063 people compared to 1,051 in 2022. It was the best yearly total since 2019.

The photo below salutes Jamie who has been one of our regulars to distribute food. Since he is a gardener, Catherine presented him an arrangement of flowers. The photo shows the Harvest can attract all ages to serve! And yes, the beauty in Port Royal shines in the late afternoon.

Unfortunately, the same trend overall wasn’t present with food. Food increased from 2021 to 2022 (14,303 to 15,302 pounds) but dipped to 13,859 pounds in 2023. The first quarter was the problem. We had 2,913 pounds in that quarter compared over 4,000 for 2022 and 2021.

As a result, pounds provided per individual dropped from 14.56 in 2022 to 13.04. In 2021, it was in the same range at 14.32. Overall, pounds per individual are substantially higher since 2019 than in earlier periods.