Jul 09, 2019
Welcome RLC Columbus!

While RLC was formed and has roots in New York City, we are aiming to become a widely used solution to eliminate food waste in communities around the USA. We are proud to support RLC branches, with the latest in Columbus, OH. Terrence, Nicole and Genevieve, who have founded the Columbus branch, wrote to us to describe their motivation to tackle food insecurity and the process for setting up an RLC branch.

The team told us how food insecurity was identified as an issue, and described their personal connections to it:

“The Near-East side of Columbus is a vibrant neighborhood with lots of history and diversity, but many of the families and community agencies in the area have varying connections to food insecurity. One of our neighborhood leaders was reviewing national trends for addressing the problem of food waste and learned about Rescuing Leftover Cuisine. The idea to develop a Columbus branch was quickly embraced by our group. We discussed how each of us had been impacted by food insecurity and to now have the capacity to be a part of the solution is a wonderful opportunity.”

They described how their personal challenges motivated them to make a difference in their community:

“One of our team members was going through a difficult time and began to remind themselves that they could funnel that energy into something good… In [RLC], the answer to getting out of a personal slump was provided, but equally as important, an opportunity to make positive contributions to the city we love was borne.”

After identifying RLC as a solution for their community, the team began the process of setting up a branch, which they described to us:

“It has been a rewarding, yet challenging experience… Since starting our branch, we have found many within the city who support the efforts and are able to connect eliminating food waste… Like all new initiatives, it has been a labor of love to connect with vendors and identify the needs of local shelters, agencies for youth and elderly, and community centers to sustain our efforts… We were fortunate to have champions like Julialynne and Keith Walker who provide a weekly community meal through Bethany Presbyterian Church and have been our most consistent donors and partners… We look forward to engaging more volunteers and increasing our time in service to community agencies within our community. Eliminating food waste and hunger are significant goals… Yet, we also have an additional passion to remember the faces and community talents that can easily be overlooked or made to feel shame. Through service, we seek to understand the stories behind the epidemic of hunger and to remember that working to resolve this issue is the only option.”

It has been a great start for the newest RLC branch, and we are incredibly thankful for the awesome work of the Columbus team, who are making a real impact in their community, and will be supporting people for a long time in the future. As they said to us:

“The sky's the limit and we are reaching for it!”