Local Food Organizations Worth Your Charitable Dollars
Get those fuzzy food feelings by giving
Meals on Wheelswww.mealsonwheelscentraltexas.org
Doesn't it sound luxurious to have a hot meal delivered right to the door with no work involved? Oh, right – like every Friday night when it becomes impossible to resist those food-delivery apps. Well, seniors and others in need also love having the convenience of a homemade meal delivered with a smile. Plus, in many cases, a home delivery is the only way that they can enjoy a bite to eat, and a delivery might take some stress off everyone's plate. MoW also provides other services, including help with pet care.
Mobile Loaves & Fisheswww.mlf.org
It's difficult to truck around homemade pies and distribute them to those camping around town, but this org found a way to spread the holiday cheer. With a network of over 20,000 volunteers, Mobile Loaves & Fishes has the means to make sure they touch those who could really use an extra slice of Texas bourbon pecan pie. Be sure to visit their fourth annual (free) Community First! Village of Lights (Fri.-Sat., Dec. 6-7 & 13-14, 5:30-9pm) to see the 200,000 holiday music-coordinated lights and help neighbors earn a dignified income by shopping at the Advent Market for handcrafted gifts made by formerly homeless craftsmen and artisans who live at the Village.
Central Texas Food Bankwww.centraltexasfoodbank.org
During the holiday season, Central Texas Food Bank is matching every donation dollar for dollar to help keep Austinites fueled through the wild and festive season. Set a reminder to send all those extra, unused, just-in-case-your-in-laws-make-an-appearance nonperishable items to CTFB (though cash goes much further toward providing a fresh, nutritious meal).
Keep Austin Fedwww.keepaustinfed.org
Expend some of your nervous energy by volunteering to distribute excess perishable food from grocery stores, schools, retailers, and commercial kitchens to organizations around Austin who will provide meals to neighbors in need. The org says that $7 per month feeds one person three meals a day, and that an average food rescue takes only an hour and redistributes enough food to feed people 185 meals. They've got plenty of other volunteer opportunities, too. As an environmental bonus, every hour spent collecting and delivering surplus food keeps 220 pounds of edible nourishment from ending up in the landfill.
If you're already planning to share the holiday spirit through a feast with friends and family, Mealshare makes it hassle-free to share your table's bounty. The international program partners with restaurants around town by marking certain dishes on each menu as BOGO. When you purchase a meal, another meal is donated to a youth in need. It's literally as easy as ordering DoorDash, so there's little excuse not to try a new eatery today and tomorrow and maybe even the next day.
Pet Food Bank of Austin and Travis Countywww.greyhoundrescueaustin.com/gra
Humans aren't the only ones hoping for comfort food. Furry friends all over the Austin area can smell the changing season, and they, too, want to be invited to the party. But for those who don't have homes, the Pet Food Bank of Austin and Travis County collects pet food and supplies for dogs, cats, and other species (and makes the supplies available for those impacted by natural disasters). Some of their partners include AIDS Services of Austin's Animal Companion Program, LifeWorks, House Rabbit Resource Network, and SafePlace.