I love New Years. I love taking the time to reflect on the past 12 months. I love the dreaming and scheming about what the New Year will hold for me. I dig it! Every year I designate a charity or non profit as my “philanthropic project” for the year. I donate undesignated funds and other resources to them as I am able. I chat them up to my friends, encouraging them to support my yearly cause. I become their advocate for 12 months and put my all behind them. I know many of you will be making resolutions about giving more or donating money to charity or even volunteering. I have deemed 2010 as the year for ACTION. The time is now. Stop talking about volunteering or donating funds and just DO IT. You know you want to.
I am dedicating all of my blog post over the next 4 weeks to highlight various non profits organizations that you may want to think about supporting. I have asked friends, colleagues, Twitter and Face Book buddies to nominate charities and organizations for me to spot light during the month of December. Let me introduce you to the first organization I am proud to highlight:
DC Central Kitchen
DC Central Kitchen began its first phase of operations on January 20, 1989, redistributing the excess food from the Presidential inauguration. The Kitchen believes that in the fight against waste-whether that’s food, money or potential- that you use all the resources available. Let’s be clear, DC Central Kitchen is not a “soup kitchen.” They are a community kitchen using a holistic philosophy.
Fight against wasted food: They recycle over one ton of surplus food each day that would otherwise go to waste and turn it into 4,500 meals for the hungry in the greater Washington, DC region. That is seriously wicked and I am in awe of that act in and of itself.
Fight against wasted money: In 2008, they began to make agreements with local farmers to purchase their “seconds” or “unclassified” produce at a price where they can make money and we can save money. Leveraging donations and filling a hole in the community food systems. Sustainability and innovation all at the same time. I like it!!
Fight against wasted potential: Using a unique training program focused on culinary skills, life skills, and job readiness, DC Central Kitchen’s12-week Culinary Job Training Program has graduated more than 700 men and women to date, helping them move on to new careers and new lives. The program has become a nationally recognized model, duplicated in dozens of communities. The goal of the program is to prepare unemployed, underemployed, previously incarcerated persons, and homeless adults for careers in the foodservice industry.
When they say they are combating hunger and creating opportunity they mean it! So what does the next 20 years look like ? DC Central Kitchen’s web site says:
As we continue to focus on long term solutions, we look forward to creating a more sustainable future. By partnering with local farmers, small businesses and concerned citizens, our goal is to increase our sustainability by generating 50% of our own revenue, while shining a light on new forms of business as philanthropy. At the same time, we will step forward to advocate for an engaged and flexible non-profit sector as we face rapidly changing demographics and issues in our society.
So if you are looking for an organization that you could share your gifts with this Holiday season please remember DC Central Kitchen. To learn how you can donate, advocate or volunteer for this organization please check out their website.http://www.dccentralkitchen.org/index.php. I challenge you to step up and join them in their fight against waste!
DO you have a fav organization that you would like to share and have spotlighted? If so please let me know!