A LOVELY bunch of pumpkins rolled through Tamworth yesterday in a heartwarming bid to feed the homeless.
More than four tonnes of pumpkins were gathered up into a horse float from Armidale’s Tilbuster Station for the second annual pumpkin run.
The project encourages country youth who are overcoming disadvantage to lend a helping hand – and a hearty meal – to Sydney’s homeless.
Tilbuster project manager Charlie Winter said more than 50 young people had worked to get the pumpkins to this stage.
The pumpkin run – jointly organised with Pathfinders – stopped in Tamworth for the first time this year before heading to Sydney.
Nathaniel Keuntje, 16, an assistant co-ordinator of the run, said it was important to help feed the city’s homeless.
But the experience has also helped him.
Nathaniel left juvenile detention in December and went to Armidale, where he got involved at Tilbuster.
“It’s helping me stay out of trouble with the law,” Nathaniel said.
Tyler Murray, 15, attends Tilbuster and was joining the pumpkin run for the first time.
“It’s all about friendship and working together,” Tyler said.
“I really enjoy it. I actually love it.”
Mr Winter said the Tilbuster program helped “all sorts” of youth – including those coming from Juvenile Justice or kids skipping school – to connect with nature and community.
“Farms are great for kids who don’t typically do well at school,” Mr Winter said.
He said the pumpkin run was for a good cause but also helped local youth.
“They learn how to give to those less fortunate than themselves,” Mr Winter said.
“It’s the gift of giving.”