Do you ever wonder just how much food is wasted? Americans discard approximately 40% of food that is produced. 1,400 calories worth of food is discarded per person per day.

An amazing organization Second Harvest partners with that works to combat this issue is Food Not Bombs. The concept behind Food Not Bombs is to recover food that would otherwise be discarded and share it with whoever might need it or want it. One of their main goals is also to reduce food waste and meet the direct need of the community.  Although Food Not Bombs provides these services, they do not consider themselves a charity. They are only trying to inspire the public to participate in changing society and focus their resources on solving problems like hunger, homelessness, and poverty.

In the city of Santa Cruz, Food Not Bombs began sharing vegan meals with plenty of hungry, in most cases, homeless, individuals at the clock tower in 1988. Additionally, it is also an amazing all-volunteer run program that recovers things like produce, bread and other plant based foods that would otherwise be discarded. Their normal distribution hours are Saturdays and Sundays at 4:00 PM. You can now find them providing these meals at the Downtown post office.

These weekly events make an important impact in Santa Cruz County. Every Saturday, people get to enjoy a hot meal. On Sundays, in addition to the hot meal, people also get the luxury of picking up free produce and groceries.

Food Not Bombs supports sharing, respect, peace, cooperation, dignity, nurturing of the environment and most of all, optimism at a time when many are in despair. They show that it is not necessary to waste so much good food, and to organize a voluntary system of food recovery and redistribution, instead. In their eyes, no one should have to rely on a soup kitchen or charity when we have an abundance of food.

Second Harvest is proud to partner with such a remarkable organization that works tirelessly to create positive change in our community.

A couple of things on their wish list to help those in need include:

  • Rice
  • Beans
  • Peanut Butter
  • Jelly
  • Soap, Shampoo, Toothbrushes/toothpaste
  • Large Pots/utensilsfood
  • Spices/herbs/olive oil
  • Clothing, etc.

Any of these items can be dropped off during their distributions.

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