This is Lisa. She is a soccer player, proud aunt, information technology expert and champion food rescuer. In the last 18 months she has spent about 300 hours volunteering for the nonprofit Keep Austin Fed, which gathers nutritious surplus food from commercial kitchens and distributes it to area charities that serve hungry people in need. In that time, Lisa alone has rescued more than 26,000 pounds of food—that would otherwise have gone in the landfill—and delivered it to where it is most needed.
Lisa started volunteering with KAF after watching the documentary Just Eat It. She was astounded by facts on the prevalence of food insecurity and the vast amount of perfectly good food that gets thrown away. Almost immediately after watching that movie, she signed up as a volunteer.
“I was absolutely floored after my first few food rescue runs at the amount of food that would be otherwise discarded EVERY SINGLE DAY. We rescue and deliver over 1,500 pounds of food every day, and that is only as low as it is because are limited by the capacity of our volunteer force.” (Want to volunteer? Click here.)
Lisa says she is “humbly energized” by the appreciation in the faces and voices of the recipients. “I had no idea we had such a large number of people living all over Austin with food insecurities. I had no idea that there were people in our city other than those we deem “homeless” or “panhandlers” that work hard and still can’t afford food for their families.” Her passion and dedication to the cause, which started with just a few hours a week, have led to her new role as the organization’s program director.
Lisa credits her mom for getting her involved with volunteering at a very young age. It helped her realize how much difference each of us can make with just an hour or two a week.