Share a meal! This just might be in the top 5 of my favorite gives! I love sharing but I particularly love sharing food. For me, food is love and comes from the heart. When you share, bake, or cook for someone else it really shows them that you care. If you have a look at our daily giving log where members post their daily gives, you too will see that sharing food is top on the list.
My sister has been baking cookies once a week for a friend of hers who lives alone. This has been a 4 year labor of love. He looks forward to this little bag of goodies every week. Add in the coffee time they share when the cookies are deliverd and you have a great give.
I love to share snacks in downtown Vancouver with people living on the street. I regularly pack extra snacks when I go to the park with the kids just in case. If I forget, the kids will remind me. Food sharing is one of their favorite gives!
One other habit you can get into is packing an extra lunch so you can easily share a meal. If you are making one, you can easily make two. Place an extra sandwich, apple, or cookies in a brown bag and give it to someone else. Give it to someone living on the street. If you buy your lunch, pick up an extra one and give it to someone at work who did not have time to get their lunch, or give it away to the homeless when you walk back to work.
Sure it might be easier to give money so they can get their own meal, but there is something beautiful about giving someone else food> It shows you really thought of them. It shows you took the time to make them feel special. That can say a lot more more than a few bucks for food. Share a meal, it makes a huge difference.
So what can you pack extra a few times a month and share with someone else? Is there a person living on the street you walk by when you go to work? Is there a kid at school who always seems to have a small lunch? Or does someone have an excuse why they don’t have lunch? Is there someone at work that could do with a home made lunch brought to their desk? Or would you rather welcome serendipity into your life? Know that whatever extra lunch or meal you have will go to the right person.
If you are a bit shy to share there are some new apps and Community Food Recovery Programs that could be your go-to option for Make a Meal – Share a Meal.
Food recovery programs like Second Harvest or Meal Connect will pick up excess food from a party, a work place function, a wedding or event. This food is passed forward to those in need. These programs are highly successful and a critical part of the Food bank system. Who do they serve? Someone who does not have a kitchen, or a shelter that has more people to feed than they can provide for. This is why Food recovery programs are important.
Too Good to Go is a new app in the US and UK that offers restaurant meals to those in needs at the end of the day. Why not buy up their surplus and have it delivered to shelter or give it out on the street. This app stops food waste and is used to share a meal with someone who needs it.
Share a Meal is a United Way Program and app that lets people donate 50 cents to a meal for someone in need. They track their meal distribution so you know where your donation is going.
Olio is a UK neighbourhood food sharing app where people close by will post food they are not using and would like to share with others. Gather up some of the left overs and make a meal for those in need or donate it to a shelter. You are stopping the food from going to waste and completing your give for the day!
If you know of a great share a meal program or app that you love, let us know! If you use one regularly start posting your share a meal idea on the global impact map so others can learn about your great giving idea.