Student-Powered Hunger Relief

Monthly Archives: April 2014

Four Campus Kitchens receive end-of-year awards

, April 24th, 2014


Just a few weeks ago at the Food Waste & Hunger Summit, we presented eight different awards to individuals and Campus Kitchens making a difference in their communities. As the spring semester wraps up at colleges across the country, it seems we’re not the only ones recognizing great hunger-fighting work: four of our Campus Kitchens have recently received awards from their school communities as well.

During the recent H. Gordon and Francis S. Davis Student Organization Achievement and Recognition (SOAR) Award Ceremony, the Campus Kitchen at the University of Georgia was selected from nearly 690 student organizations to receive the Most Innovative Program Award. This award goes to the student organization that understands the current needs of the UGA student body and has positively advanced the UGA community by sponsoring the most innovative, creative and groundbreaking project or program.

The Campus Kitchen at Kent State University was selected to receive the Most Impactful Service Initiative Award, which was presented to them at the Showcase of Excellence in Action – A Celebration of Engagement and Service. This award is presented by the Office of Experiential Education and Civic Engagement and is given to recognize a student, staff, faculty member or group who has contributed extraordinary service to their community or who has been involved in coordinating a service project or program on the Kent State University campuses. Jacqueline Telmanik, Michelle Whitacre, Alexandra James and Joshua Lenardos, four Campus Kitchen at Kent State leaders, were all recipients of this award.

Over in Virginia, the Campus Kitchen at William and Mary was presented the Community Organization Award from the William and Mary chapter of the NAACP. The award goes to a group that brings together a community of people to advocate for a particular cause or movement. This year, the Campus Kitchen at William and Mary was chosen for their commitment to addressing food insecurity in the Williamsburg area, which was exemplified through their success in our Raise the Dough Challenge (they came in third place and were up against Campus Kitchens hosted by much larger universities).

Finally, the soon-to-open Campus Kitchen at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville (SIUE) recently received the SIUE Community Agency Award, a grant award to fund their programs, from the SIUE Meridian Society. The Community Agency Award is given to nonprofit agencies that work closely with SIUE students, faculty and staff to promote SIUE’s values of civic responsibility, service, sustainability and inclusion through civic engagement programs. The SIUE Meridian Society is a group of women who provide leadership through philanthropy by making annual grants each spring to fund SIUE projects that provide direct services in the community.

We’re thrilled that these Campus Kitchens have been recognized for the powerful impact they make in their communities, and we can’t wait to see how they’ll deepen that impact in the future. Congratulations to all of our Campus Kitchens as they wrap up a semester filled with success in classrooms, kitchens, gardens and more. We’ll be sure to share their combined impact for the entire 2013-2014 academic year this summer!

Welcoming Georgia Tech, the 35th Campus Kitchen

, April 18th, 2014

Earlier this year, students and staff at Georgia Tech participated in our first-ever launch grant video competition and won $5,000 to start a Campus Kitchen. Today, we’re thrilled to officially open the Campus Kitchen at Georgia Tech.

The Campus Kitchen at Georgia Tech (CKGT) is our 35th Campus Kitchen nationally and the first of the five grant winners to begin regular operations. They will operate out of Brittain Dining Hall and recover food from all four dining halls on the Georgia Tech campus – this thanks to the supportive relationship CKGT has developed with Sodexo-run Georgia Tech Dining. CKGT’s initial client partner agencies are Atlanta Mission, the city’s largest provider of services to the homeless, and Atlanta’s Table, a project of the Atlanta Community Food Bank.

Georgia Tech is one of seven universities that participated in the Campus Kitchen launch grant video competition sponsored by Sodexo Foundation in late January. A group of campus representatives created a video (watch it at the top of this post) explaining why their community would benefit from a Campus Kitchen and rallied thousands of supporters to vote for their entry. By the end of the competition, Georgia Tech received more than 5,000 votes and won a $5,000 grant to bring our program to their campus.

Matt, our expansion and partnerships manager, has spent the last couple of days at Georgia Tech equipping the student leaders who will be running the Campus Kitchen with the skills and information they need to effectively operate. This afternoon, after Matt has finished sharing our program’s best practices with CKGT, their official launch event will take place. After a ceremony with Georgia Tech Dining, Georgia Tech administrators and client agency representatives, CKGT will conduct a food safety demonstration and cooking shift in Brittain Dining Hall to prepare more than 200 meals for Atlanta Mission.

Read more about the addition of the Campus Kitchen at Georgia Tech to our growing network in our press release.

To learn more about bringing a Campus Kitchen to your school, visit our Campus Kitchen planner.

Win $5,000 to start a Campus Kitchen and serve older adults

, April 11th, 2014

planner header

Are you interested in bringing our program to your campus? We have a great opportunity for any school interested in serving senior citizens in their community: a grant competition made possible by AARP Foundation.

Any group or individual interested in learning more about starting a Campus Kitchen can obtain access to the Campus Kitchen Planner, which details the step-by-step collaborative planning process. Our entire process is laid out on a single page so you can easily see what you’ve accomplished and what needs to happen next. Even better, each planning task can be assigned to an individual, and then physically checked off a list when it’s complete!

After registering for this great tool, we hope you’ll participate in our launch grant video competition, which will provide three schools $5,000 grants to open a Campus Kitchen. To qualify for the competition, a planning team must obtain the following documents (all of which are outlined in the planner) by May 16:

– letter of support from sponsoring office
– letter of support from dining services
– letter of support from student leader group
– letter of intent from school administration

Qualified teams will then create short videos explaining why their community would benefit from a senior-serving Campus Kitchen. We’ll select up to 10 finalists to compete, and then anyone can vote for their favorite video. The schools that receive the most votes on their video will win $5,000 each!

Ready to compete, or want to learn more? Get started by signing up for your personalized planner here!

The first-ever Food Waste & Hunger Summit

, April 10th, 2014


This past weekend, hundreds of student hunger-fighters from around the country gathered at Northwestern University for the first-ever Food Waste & Hunger Summit, a two day conference co-hosted by The Campus Kitchens Project and Food Recovery Network. The event convened student leaders who are pioneering solutions to the interrelated problems of food insecurity and food waste and gave participants a forum to learn from experts in the fields of social justice, social enterprise, public health, non-profit management and related fields in addition to the opportunity to share best practices.

On Friday evening, the Summit was kicked off with a small reception with food donated by local restaurants and Northwestern Dining, during which The Campus Kitchens Project honored Sodexo with the Vision Award as an acknowledgement of their commitment to the fight against hunger in communities around the country.

The Summit began in earnest on Saturday morning with introductions to the host and partner organizations and an inspiring keynote by Robert Egger, founder of DC Central Kitchen, The Campus Kitchens Project and L.A. Kitchen. Summit participants then had the opportunity to participate in a variety of breakout sessions centered around hunger issues, initiatives beyond meal service, funding and more. Representatives from Sodexo, Bon Appetit and Chartwells were also on hand to discuss best practices in terms of food recovery from dining service providers.

On Sunday, Mike Curtin, CEO of DC Central Kitchen, welcomed the students back to another day jam-packed with opportunities for networking and sharing best practices. Attendees were able to attend a variety of breakout sessions on advocacy, student leadership development and leveraging volunteer experiences in the job search. Nicole Civita, visiting assistant professor of law at University of Arkansas and director of the Food Recovery Project, presented a plenary session on the Bill Emerson Good Samaritan Act and legal issues surrounding food recovery, and noted food waste writer Jonathan Bloom closed out the Summit with a final keynote address.

Thank you to everyone to attended and contributed to the Food Waste & Hunger Summit – the event was a huge success thanks to your support and enthusiasm! We were thrilled to meet and connect with a variety of organizations, including Food Recovery NetworkFood Day, Real Food Challenge, Swipes for the Homeless, Society of St. Andrew, Rotary First Harvest, HungerU and No More Empty Pots, and we look forward to collaborating in the future!

See more pictures from the event on our Flickr page.

2014 Campus Kitchen award winners

, April 10th, 2014


When the academic year comes to a close, we enjoy taking an opportunity to recognize outstanding Campus Kitchens and their leaders for their work to end hunger in their communities. During the first-ever Food Waste & Hunger Summit, Campus Kitchens from around the country gathered to celebrate their accomplishments over the past year. The Campus Kitchens Project presented eight individuals and Campus Kitchens with awards acknowledging their commitment to fighting hunger and dedication to the Campus Kitchen network.

Going Beyond the Meal Award – recognizes the Campus Kitchen that demonstrates excellent “beyond the meal” initiatives in service to their community.
The Campus Kitchen at Auburn University
Serving more than just meals is something that the Campus Kitchen at Auburn University has been striving to do since they began in 2011. Bringing the campus and community together as they continue to grow their program is one of their main goals. Realizing that the students they fed during the week oftentimes are not getting adequate meals on the weekend, they have grown their “Blessings in a Backpack” program to now provide meals every Friday afternoon to over 700 students so they can enjoy healthy balanced meals and snacks when they aren’t at school. CKAU is also actively involved in their on-campus food pantry, which helps serve student on campus who might also be in need of food. Always looking for other ways to contribute to their clients, CKAU is also planning to start a crock pot nutrition education cooking class for families in their community. Clearly, CKAU understands the impact of serving more than just a meal!

Ingrid Easton Student Visionary Award celebrates the entrepreneurial drive in our student leaders, who dream big and make it happen. The award is named in honor of Ingrid Easton, Washington and Lee University graduate who achieved her goal of opening a Campus Kitchen at Washington and Lee University in September 2006.
Leah Schenkel, the Campus Kitchen at Wake Forest University
Leah Schenkel has been a dedicated volunteer with the Campus Kitchen at Wake Forest University for her 4 years as a student at Wake Forest. This year she is their first-ever Procurement Coordinator. In this volunteer role, Leah has streamlined food rescue operations and tracking, formed important relationships with Aramark, and further developed strong community relationships to find a place for food with social service agencies across the city. Under Leah’s leadership CKWF has almost completely eliminated food waste in their operations and have increased the opportunities to capture food waste on campus and in the community. Most significantly, Leah is a constant presence in the Campus Kitchen. She has gone out of her way to come to know all of CKWF’s partners so that she knows specifically what they can use the most. Leah is the the X-factor that you might not expect but whose hard work makes the Campus Kitchen at Wake Forest run its most effectively. She has been a tireless advocate for eliminating food waste and food justice. Her Campus Kitchen feels that having Leah as an unique ingredient in their Campus Kitchen has enriched their leadership recipe beyond measure.


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