Student-Powered Hunger Relief

Meal Recipient Plan



Who will receive meals?

Choosing meal recipients for your Campus Kitchen can be challenging. You need to show us during the planning process that you have designated specific meal recipients, but you don’t want to commit to those clients before you are approved for affiliation and know the capacity of your kitchen’s meal production. Social service organizations, however, are often excited to build this partnership, even if it’s only “hypothetical” at first. Be transparent with your plans and honest about the process. More often than not, they’ll be excited to participate in the process with you.

You probably already know some perfect meal recipients. Do students at your school tutor kids in after school programs? Do you have a companionship program for home-bound seniors? Do students work with any shelters nearby? If you do, you have some perfect candidates. Wouldn’t it be great if students who were going to tutor stopped by the Campus Kitchen and picked up meals on their way, so that those kids could study on a full stomach? We call this “piggy-backing” meals, and it’s a great way to get started.

Key points for choosing clients

  • Start small! You can begin with a commitment to just a couple of clients, and then add more as your Campus Kitchen grows.
  • Most schools start out with 2-5 agencies, who they deliver to 1-3 times per week.
  • 40-100 meals per delivery shift is a generally good goal to begin with.
  • Individual meals delivered to homes and apartments are more time-consuming and resource-intensive than meals delivered to agencies and shelters, but volunteers generally like individual meal deliveries the best. To facilitate individual deliveries more easily, try finding an apartment building with one social worker who oversees all of its residents, rather than a neighborhood of individual clients each with their own social worker. Also, consider delivering to the same individuals two or three times per week. Almost always, they need the meals enough to get them a few times a week!

Types of meal recipients

There are two kinds of meal recipients: individual clients and congregate clients. Here’s how they’re different:

Individual clients: Meals are typically packaged in individual meal containers and are delivered week to week to the same person at their house or an agency. Individual clients must:

  1. Be referred to the Campus Kitchen for services through a social worker or case manager who regularly supports the client’s needs.With the safeguard of a social worker or case manager, the Campus Kitchen can be assured of the client’s safety and that the Campus Kitchen can notify someone if there is a concern with the client.
  2. Have the facilities (microwave or stove) to reheat meals, will accept meals that can be consumed cold.
  3. Have the facilities to store the meals if not consumed immediately (refrigerator).
  4. Be home during the two-hour window that the Campus Kitchen delivers meals.
  5. Live in a neighborhood that is safe for volunteers to visit.
  6. Do not have significant dietary restrictions.

Congregate clients: Meals are typically packaged in large hotel pans that hold enough for 10 – 30 people, and are delivered to an agency and served “family style.” Congregate client agencies must:

  1. Have an operational kitchen that is licensed by the local health department.
  2. Have a sink for food preparers to safely wash hands.
  3. Have parking available for Campus Kitchen volunteers.
  4. Have table service (plates, silverware and napkins for meals to be served).
  5. Will be available during the designated time that the Campus Kitchen will deliver/serve meals
  6. Are located in a neighborhood that is safe for volunteers to visit.
  7. Can accept meals that have varied menus. A client can be promised a protein, starch, vegetable and fruit. Because meals are created from donated food products, clients who want/need a specific menu established 1 week before meal delivery may not be a good fit for Campus Kitchen meals.

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