Our mission is to help alleviate hunger by collecting edible, surplus food that would otherwise be thrown away and redistributing it to agencies that feed the hungry. The concept of picking up and redistributing food is a simple weapon in the fight against hunger. Hunger is less a problem of scarce resources but rather inefficient distribution.
We provide different programs for redistributing gleaned food. Urban Gleaners delivers directly to:
- Food to Schools Program
- In 2009, we began our Food to Schools program, addressing the plight of childhood hunger in Portland’s East Multnomah County. Currently, we have 17 schools on our roster that have been identified as having 75.1-95.3% of the elementary school children on free or reduced lunch.
- Emergency Food Relief Agencies
- Some of the emergency agencies that benefit from Urban Gleaners hunger relief include: Blanchet House of Hospitality, Portland Rescue Mission , Transition Projects Incorporated, Outside In and many more.
- Summer Free Farmers Markets
- Our Summer Free Farmers Markets provide hunger relief during the summer months to children and their families in the attendance areas of our 17 schools.
- Mobile Market – A Pilot Program
- To meet the challenge of the large number of food deserts in east Multnomah County, Urban Gleaners will launch an exploratory pilot program that brings a “Mobile Market” to two neighborhoods most in need within our service area. Over the course of 2015, we will research the efficacy of the mobile market concept and how it could become an ancillary service to our Food to Schools Program.
None of these programs would be possible without the enduring help from our committed volunteers. Urban Gleaners relies on the skills and passion of some 45 volunteers whom on a weekly basis pick up and deliver food. To learn more about volunteering and read about our volunteer of the month click here.