The national network of food banks and food rescue organizations and the major public advocate for hunger relief in the United States. Feeding America (FA) establishes and develops partnerships with major growers, processors, retailers, manufacturers, wholesalers and restaurants to encourage the donation of surplus food. FA then directs these donations to member organizations like Long Island Cares to maximize the efficiency and effectiveness of the network hunger relief efforts. FA has the prestige and influence needed to further the cause of hunger relief in America.
A charitable organization that solicits, receives, inventories, stores and distributes food and grocery products from various sources. A food bank may purchase food from funds provided by government agencies or charitable grants, or it may receive food donated by manufacturers, retailers or individuals. The food bank is responsible for ensuring all food and grocery products that it receives and distributes comply with industry and regulatory standards. These products are distributed to charitable human service agencies, such as food pantries, which provide the products directly to clients.
The limited or uncertain availability of nutritionally adequate foods, including involuntarily cutting back on meals and food portions or not knowing the source of the next meal.
A nonprofit organization typically small in size, such as a faith-based institution or social service agency, that receives donated food items and distributes them to hungry people for preparation at home. By contrast, a soup kitchen prepares and serves meals to its clients. A food pantry will often receive its supply of food from a food bank.
Different from a food bank that handles warehoused foods and grocery products, a food rescue organization specializes in soliciting donations of leftover perishable food from restaurants, catering halls and the like, delivering this food immediately to emergency food programs. Unlike food banks, which must deal with the logistic management of bulk inventories, a food rescue organization is likely to consist of a dedicated corps of volunteers who use their own vehicles to make food pickups and deliveries in the same day.
Access to enough food for an active, healthy life. At a minimum, food security includes the ready availability of nutritionally adequate and safe foods, and an assured ability to acquire acceptable foods in socially acceptable ways (e.g., without resorting to emergency food supplies, scavenging or other coping strategies).