4 years ago1,000+ Views
Komal Ahmad was just a young college student at UC Berkeley when she got the idea for Feeding Forward, an online service that matches businesses that have surplus food with nearby homeless shelters. Anyone can use the nonprofit's website or app to report a donation of excess food, and immediately a driver will be dispatched to their location to pick it up and transport it to a facility where it can be distributed to those in need.
This is a revolutionary project – and desperately needed. In the United States, 1 in 6 people doesn't have access to enough food. Meanwhile, every single day, Americans waste enough food to fill a football stadium to its brim. We have enough food; the question is just how to distribute it to those who need it.
Feeding Forward is working hard to solve that logistics problem. So far, the small organization only serves the San Francisco Bay area, but Ahmad has plans to expand it to more cities, such as Seattle and Boston, in the near future.
I really hope to see this nonprofit take off and grow in a big way in the near future. As someone who is learning more and more about how grave America's food distribution problems are, I love knowing that organizations like Feeding Forward are making strides towards re-routing some of the huge quantities of edible leftovers we waste every day. Imagine, in the face of a fridge stuffed full of too many leftovers, being able to simply open an app and tap a button, and poof! Someone arrives to take that excess food to people who really need it. It's a fantasy that I hope will someday soon become a reality.
Learn more about Feeding Forward on their website, or read the article that inspired my card!
This is so awesome. When I used to work at a cafe, we'd have tons of pastries left over at the end of the day, but didn't really know of anyone to donate to. It seemed like too much of a hassle to figure out which shelters there were around the area (if any), plus figure out how we were going to transport food there every single day. At least here they pick it up. It's brilliant!
I absolutely love this. It's gross how wasteful we can be, while our neighbors are starving. I hope this is something more food businesses will partake in. I understand there may be some legality issues surrounding giving food away. Does Feeding Forward address any of that?
That's really good! Reading this was a refreshing start to my day. I love this.
Yes they do, @alywoah! It turns out that businesses who give away food "in good faith" (which I guess means charitably?) are protected by a federal law called the Bill Emerson Good Samaritan Food Donation Act, which protects them from liability concerning the food's safety. Of course, we have to hope that the shelters and food banks have solid practices in place for screening food and making sure it's safe for consumption! I don't know much about that side of things. You've inspired me to do more research! :)