News
USF Student Group Cuts Waste, Feeds SF's Hungry

More than 500 pounds of food that used to be discarded by University of San Francisco's cafeteria every week now feeds more than 200 San Franciscans in need, thanks to a growing group of student activists on a rescue mission.

"The food is cooked and has never been touched," says Kacie LaGuire who was among a handful of socially conscious students who in 2014 noticed the amount of prepared food the kitchen throws out as surplus. “Yet we know that one in four San Franciscans face hunger — we all see it every day.”

Soon after, the students established the USF chapter of the Food Recovery Network (FRN), a national nonprofit with the dual goals of feeding the hungry and reducing wasted food's 3.3 billion ton carbon footprint — which, if it were a country, would make it the third largest CO2 emitter behind China and the U.S.

Since its launch four years ago, the chapter has grown to almost 130 student volunteers. Three nights a week they swoop in and pick up hot trays of chicken quesadillas, tortellini, pizza, and other leftovers from Market Cafe (the main dining facility on campus), delivering the food to lines of low-income residents in San Francisco’s Mission and Tenderloin neighborhoods. They serve the food at late-night church services put on by nonprofit partner San Francisco Night Ministry — which, in addition to serving hot meals, also provides free crisis intervention and counseling individuals in the city who are homeless, disabled, or struggling with addiction.

“First-time volunteers are often shocked by how much food goes wasted, and also by the conditions they see in Mission and Tenderloin,” says LaGuire, a media studies major who serves as FRN’s spokesperson. “Yet they quickly realize what a great way to volunteer it is, as you immediately see the impact you are making.”

Thanks to support from Bon Appetit (the university’s food service provider), which boxes and wraps the food for transit, LaGuire and the other FRN members serve about 225 people a week.

“It used to be just peanut butter and jelly sandwiches,” says Night Ministry's Monica Ortiz, who did the job on her own until USF's FRN chapter came on board. “Now not only do the students provide warm, nutritious meals to people who often haven’t eaten for days, they are also there talking with them and getting to know them. They give people hope.”

(From: University of San Francisco)





Recent News

July 31, 2019 — Jesuits from Most Holy Trinity Parish, Bellarmine College Prep, SLO Catholic Neuman Center and Santa Clara Jesuit Community gathered at Mission Santa Clara to celebrate the Feast of St. Ignatius, Founder of the Jesuits.

July 26, 2019 — Fr. Michael J. Buckley, SJ, died on Thursday, July 25, 2019 at 6:10am in Los Gatos, California.

July 23, 2019 — Fr. James Bell Reichmann, SJ, died on Friday, July 19, 2019 at 6:30pm in Los Gatos, California.

July 10, 2019 — Jesuits West recently received a $50,000 donation from the Knights of Columbus Seattle Council 676 for the senior care of Jesuits in the Province.

July 8, 2019 — On a Sunday in mid-June, before thousands of cheering Seattle University students, Fr. José Alberto (Chepe) Idiáquez, SJ, of Nicaragua, was presented with an honorary doctorate degree from University President Fr. Stephen Sundborg, SJ.

July 3, 2019 — You are invited to use the attached prayer, St. Kateri Tekakwitha, in your personal reflections and other appropriate gatherings. Kindly share with friends.

June 25, 2019 — On June 8, 2019, Jesuits West celebrated the ordination of five Jesuits to the priesthood at Our Lady of La Vang Church in Portland, Oregon.

view all news

Search news

Publications

Jesuits West Magazine - Spring 2019

Mission Magazine - Fall 2018

Mission Magazine - Spring 2018


Companions
Summer, 2019

Companions
Fall, 2018

Companions
Summer, 2018


Loyola Institute for Spirituality
Loyola Institute for Spirituality (LIS), founded in 1997, is located in Orange, CA. LIS provides many programs and services for individuals, parishes, and dioceses throughout Southern California and beyond.