Connecting Local and Refugee Communities Through Food Rescue

by Amy Namur


Our solution

My solution is to create a Food Rescue Program that would collect donated edible food from local farms, restaurants, and markets that would otherwise be thrown away due to visible defects or upcoming expiration dates. This food can then be brought to a communal kitchen located in the refugee camps in order for refugees to repurpose the produce into meals that could then be sold for a small profit.

What's the business opportunity for host and refugee community

Implementing a Food Rescue would strengthen ties between the local farmers, restaurant owners, and market workers in Rwanda and refugees by creating a network of donation and repurposing. Overall this solution would reduce food waste and create connections between the refugee and host communities that would otherwise be nonexistent. . By donating food that would otherwise be thrown away, these local communities’ members are interacting with the local refugee community in a new way.

How has it been implemented and what impact it had

Food Rescues have been started in various forms across the U.S.A. and have been widely successful. The US government runs a wide-scale "gleaning" effort that has repurposed over 900,000 pounds of fresh produce from farms to local food shelfs that would otherwise been wasted. Food Rescues have also been successful on a smaller scale in states and cities and have the potential to have a large impact on low income communities by providing nutritious food and reducing food waste.

Our Skills and Experience

I am a current master’s student studying Public Policy and Human Development. I have experience working with non-profits in my local community and have spent many years working directly with refugees and immigrants. I interned with a local Food Rescue in the US and have seen the benefits of food rescue’s in my current residence on the Netherlands. I hope to combine my experience working with minority populations with my experiences with Food Rescues to successfully implement my solution.