Volunteers, non-profit organization help widow with orchard - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Volunteers, non-profit organization help widow with orchard

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GREEN BLUFF, Wash. -

For the thousands of widows living in Spokane County, it’s hard to adjust to living without the love of your life by your side. But one organization is working to help.

Charlene Hansen works all day to keep her orchard in shape.

“My husband and I thought it was going to be our retirement job,” she says.

She and her husband moved to Green Bluff in 1996.

“When we first came up here we didn't know one tree from another,” she says. “And we learned how to prune a tree together.”

And together, they created Doc and Char's Orchard.

“It’s very time consuming. It's a lot of work. It's not for the faint of heart,” she says.

Char has a lot of memories with her husband at the orchard, but then, about three and a half years ago, Char’s husband passed away.

“It was very overwhelming,” she says. “However I had support from two of my daughters and their husbands.”

She works on her 10 acres and has hundreds of trees - apple, apricot, and cherry - and other produce. Char is 83 years old and she runs the orchard by herself. 

Her friend, Wes Teterud, visited her one day. 

“I noticed her orchard needed to be cleaned and she was doing it all by herself and it was just an insurmountable task,” Wes says.

He’s the founder of Widows Might, an organization that provides support to widows. Wes found some volunteers from Liberty Mutual to come out and help her out.

“This has been a true blessing to me,” Char says, especially as they help her continue to grow what she and her husband love.

The volunteers cleared the branches that had been pruned from her orchard and Char can continue providing the U-Pick experience and her homemade pies to her customers.

“I've always been told I couldn't do it, so I did it. I don't know. I'll do it as long as I can,” Char says.

To learn more about Widows Might: http://widowsmightspokane.com/

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