Hope Seeds International (HSI) Seed Bank
The goal of the HSI Seed Bank is to serve as a resource for missionaries and community development workers who desire to improve the nutrition and lives of those they serve, be it for families, orphanages, schools, or small-scale farmers and gardeners. Our primary objective is to provide high quality vegetable seeds and specifically to aid in outreach programs to introduce Christ. All seed sent is open-pollinated with the goal of saving seed for future generations to reach the best level of sustainability as possible. Our seed bank maintains a collection of vegetable garden seeds that grow in diverse and often difficult conditions. We send what is referred to as a Hope Garden Family Pack of seeds with the Message of Hope (the gospel message) included in every pack. Each family pack of seeds can be tailored with 10 to 12 varieties of traditional vegetable and herb seeds, depending on the need. We have a limited supply of special seed varieties that are available in smaller quantities for experimentation that can be grown and saved for distribution. We also offer several gospel tracts in multiple languages, including The Message of Hope, Colors of Hope, and several options from our partner, Missionary Press International. Educational materials on gardening are also sent with each box of seed. HSI is committed to helping missionaries and development workers provide a means of communicating the gospel to disciple the next generation of believers. We also work domestically in the US to promote health, nutrition, gardening, and encouragement.
Before Requesting Seeds
Seeds and materials are available free of charge for missionaries, international development workers, US outreach programs, and those actively engaged in changing lives in their communities. Seeds are intended to be used for humanitarian aid/relief purposes only, not for resale, and are supplied free of charge for this purpose; however, mission agencies and development agencies can charge a nominal fee to families/recipients for development purposes to place value and ownership on the seed if necessary. If this is the intent, any proceeds must be invested back for humanitarian purposes or the intended outreach of the mission. To find out if you qualify, please read the terms of agreement below. Once you have agreed, please fill out your request and submit by using the form provided. You can select seeds of your choice or Hope Seeds can make the selection for you. Please note that availability of specific types/varieties of seeds does vary on occasion. In such cases, Hope Seeds will select an appropriate substitute. Hope Seeds provides shipping to any US address free of charge, however, a donation to help cover this cost is suggested. International shipping is the responsibility of the individual or organization receiving the seeds. Please be aware that a response to your request for seed may take time. Hope Seeds is mostly a volunteer organization. Our network of volunteers, through churches, schools, and families, hand package all individual seed packets and assemble the Hope Garden Family Packs. Everything is packed with love and by hand--nothing mechanical. This is how HSI can offer our services with little expense. In 2021, we had over 800 volunteers put in over 10,000 volunteer hours!
Your patience is greatly appreciated. If you do not receive a reply within two weeks, please send an email reminder to: email@example.com.
Other Things to Consider Before Requesting Seeds
• Seeds in our seed bank may already be available in the country where you work. Please check. We do not intend to compete with local supply chains. However, the seed may be of low quality or unaffordable. We only supply seed for humanitarian purposes for those who cannot afford or retain quality seed.
• All seeds in HSI seed bank are declared to be in the public domain for the good of mankind. In short, we mainly work with heirloom and open-pollinated varieties that can legally be saved. We do not provide hybrid, treated, or GMO seeds.
• Most varieties of seed in HSI's seed bank are purchased in bulk from reputable seed companies that provide quality seeds from growers across the United States. HSI follows laws of the United States in seed imports and exports.
• Hope Seeds reserves the right to remove any of the varieties mentioned in our seed listing if seed becomes unavailable, if we determine that a species is of minimal interest to our network, or we learn that a species has unexpected poor performance.
• The seeds offered by HSI are selected based upon the feedback we receive from those on the field. Hope Seeds encourages study, experimentation, and partnership to provide our ministry with feedback on all seed distributions. In this way, you can help improve our service.
SPECIAL NOTE: Please be aware that some countries require an Import Permit and/or a Phytosanitary Certificate to allow seeds into the country. If you are shipping or hand carrying your seeds to a country that has these requirements, you are responsible for acquiring and paying for these documents. Most Western countries and some Central American countries have strict import laws. Traditionally, most seeds we provide have been hand carried in suitcases to the destination. Since seed is intended for humanitarian aid/relief purposes only, this has been the most successful way seeds have been transported. You are the best person to know and work with those in customs as you enter your country of service. Up to 500 family packs weighing 40 lbs. typically can be carried in one suitcase. Seeds are shipped from Hope Seeds in a 1 cubic square foot box which typically contains 250 family packs, weighing approximately 20 lbs. We can help obtain a Phytosanitary Certificate if you need one, however, this takes time. Please keep in mind that even though we are licensed as a seed company, we are not a commercial seed operation. We rely on very few staff, and primarily volunteers to package and process seed requests. Typically, orders are processed and shipped within several weeks of the date your order is placed, depending on seed availability and volunteers. Large orders, over 1,000 family packs could take several months. Orders are shipped by UPS, FedEx, or the USPS. Your patience is appreciated.
• First read the partnership agreement. Once you have agreed you will be taken to the online seed request form.
• Search the Online Hope Seeds Seed Bank Catalog for a list of seeds we offer along with a brief description of each, from which you can select the varieties you prefer, or you may simply have us choose the selection of seeds based upon on your location and seed availability.
• Please choose and check the box beside the seed types desired (up to 10-12 varieties) or select the option for Hope Seeds to put together the assortment for you.
• Determine the quantity of Hope Garden Family Packs that you would like to request. Some hesitate to request as many as they could use, but Hope Seeds is here to equip you to serve others, so please do not hesitate to request as many as you feel you can use. Likewise, seeds do best when kept in good conditions and are planted as soon as possible, rather than storing them for the next year. You are not limited to a one-time request. We typically fill requests for 250 to 1,000 Hope Garden Family Packs for the most cost-effective shipping/packaging purposes. Smaller requests can also be accommodated for mission teams, individual missionaries, etc. working with just 10 to 100 families, small orphanages, community gardens, and/or outreach programs such as CHE (Community Health and Evangelism). We do also accommodate larger requests, but those may take longer to fill, for example, outreaches through Missionary Flights International and Agape Flights may take several months.
• Seeds are provided free of charge; however, you will receive an invoice indicating the itemized contents of your shipment along with the full retail value for informational purposes. We do suggest a donation to cover the cost of US shipping, along with a 3% donation of the retail value on the invoice to help Hope Seeds serve more people. Hope Seeds realizes that not all organizations or missions are able to send a financial gift. In such cases we rely on our faithful donors for assistance.
• Please provide us with as much contact information as possible, including the primary contact person’s name, phone number, email address, the ministry/organization name (if applicable), and a complete US shipping address with name for shipping, phone number, and email--if different than the primary contact. In addition, please provide us with the exact website and/or social media name(s) for your ministry/outreach as well.
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