OMAHA – The University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) has joined The Campus Kitchens Project, the leading national nonprofit empowering students to fight hunger and food waste.
The official launch of the UNO Campus Kitchen is set for Thursday, Oct. 27 from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. at the Barbara Weitz Community Engagement Center. The campus community is invited to attend.
The student-led organization will turn wasted food into healthy, balanced meals for their community. With the launch of the program, the Campus Kitchen at UNO will become the 55th Campus Kitchen to join the national network.
At Campus Kitchens across the country, students lead efforts to combat food waste and hunger by transforming surplus food from dining halls, community gardens, restaurants, and grocery stores into healthy meals for their community. The Campus Kitchen at UNO is sponsored by the school’s Office of Sustainability. The Campus Kitchen at UNO is partnering with the Office of Civic and Social Responsibility for volunteer recruitment and the Maverick Food Pantry for food donations.
“Together we can fight hunger in Omaha,” said Emily Bradley, President of Every Bite Counts (EBC). EBC is the student-run service organization focused on raising awareness around food waste and food insecurity that will be operating the Campus Kitchen at UNO.
“Food waste is Omaha's no. 1 contributor to landfill waste, yet one in five children in Omaha don't know where their next meal is coming from," Bradley said. "We have the resources to end hunger in the Omaha community, and now Every Bite Counts is the means to deliver those resources through the Campus Kitchen at UNO."
With support from UNO Food Services, the Campus Kitchen at UNO will conduct food recovery shifts at catering events held in the Barbara Weitz Community Engagement Center, Monday through Friday. In the future, the Campus Kitchen will expand to include all events catered by UNO Food Services. Student volunteers will deliver all recovered food to Youth Emergency Services twice a week and expand to more days if it is warranted.
In the last academic year, Campus Kitchens across the country recovered more than 1.3 million pounds of wasted food and served nearly 350,000 meals. Student volunteers with the national organization also work to promote sustainable solutions to address hunger and food insecurity in their communities.
The Campus Kitchen launch comes at the end of UNO’s first Campus Sustainability Month, which brought films, speakers and demonstrations to campus to encourage students, faculty and staff to make environmentally-friendly choices.
For media requests, please contact:
Sam Petto, UNO Media Relations Coordinator
Charley Reed, UNO Associate Director of Media Relations
About the University of Nebraska at Omaha
Located in one of America’s best cities to live, work and learn, the University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) is Nebraska’s premier metropolitan university. With more than 15,000 students enrolled in 200-plus programs of study, UNO is recognized nationally for its online education, graduate education, military friendliness and community engagement efforts. Founded in 1908, UNO has served learners of all backgrounds for more than 100 years and is dedicated to another century of excellence both in the classroom and in the community.
About The Campus Kitchens Project
Founded in 2001, The Campus Kitchens Project is a national organization that empowers student volunteers to fight hunger and food waste in their community. On over 50 university and high school campuses across the country, students transform unused food from dining halls, grocery stores, restaurants, and farmers’ markets into meals that are delivered to local agencies serving those in need. By taking the initiative to run a community kitchen, students develop entrepreneurial and leadership skills, along with a commitment to serve their community, that they will carry with them into future careers. Each Campus Kitchen goes beyond meals by using food as a tool to promote poverty solutions, implement garden initiatives, participate in nutrition education, and convene food policy events. To learn more about our work or bring The Campus Kitchens Project to your school, visit www.campuskitchens.org.