Volunteering for a “shift” is easy and fun to do. Typically “shifts” only take less than an hour and you get to meet some of the most generous and grateful people.

Don’t have a car or want to help in a different way? E-mail us and we will apply your skills in other ways to help feed those in need in our community.

Our Funders

We have been able to continue our work thanks in part to grants from these foundations. We could not help feed those in need without support from the community!

Athens Food Rescue and The Gathering Place are old friends.

“We have been partnering with The Gathering Place since we first started rescuing food,” said AFR Executive Director Teresa Curtiss.

That means Athens Food Rescue volunteers have been picking up donations and leaving them for Gathering Place clients for six years.

“We have delivered to them over 11,500 pounds of food altogether,” Curtiss said. “Ginger and the team are always a pleasure to work with.”

“Ginger” is Ginger Schmalenberg, the executive director at The Gathering Place, a program promoting recovery for adults coping with mental illness or substance abuse disorder. It operates out of a home on Congress Street.

Just as the name suggests, The Gathering Place is a hangout where clients can drop in to socialize and participate in various programs and activities. The meal program is a big part of that and AFR has helped make it an everyday enterprise.

“Members, staff and volunteers work together to develop menus and recipes, and prep and cook together daily,” Schmalenberg explained.  “It is evidence-based that focusing on a healthy diet, good sleep hygiene and exercise can help maintain positive mental health outcomes.”

She added, “We are also able to offer snacks and ready-to-go meals throughout the day to those who are currently unhoused in our community because we receive sandwiches and deli items from Kindred Market through Athens Food Rescue.”

“Recently, we donated a shelving system to them to help keep all their food organized,” said Curtiss.

Athens Food Rescue works with several area food facilities to collect food that otherwise would be thrown out and disseminates it to those who are hungry.

“Being able to serve a daily meal and have extra food items in our food pantry from organizations like Athens Food Rescue enables those we serve more food security,” Schmalenberg said.  “Many people don’t realize that individuals who live on Social Security for a disability do not receive a large amount of funds on their monthly food card, some only $20 monthly.”

If you would like to support the efforts of Athens Food Rescue, gifts can be made to The Foundation for Appalachian Ohio in AFR’s name. Contributions are tax deductible and can also be sent directly to Athens Food Rescue, 35 Charles St., Athens, Ohio 45701.

More information is available at athensfoodrescue.com and on Facebook.



Why participate in food rescue?

Help the Community

  • 1 in 6 American households are food insecure

  • Contributing to Athens Food Rescue helps feed hungry people in Athens with food that would otherwise go to waste

Improve Your Bottom Line

  • Reduce waste hauling fees

  • Cut costs by developing new waste reduction strategies

  • You may be eligible for an enhanced tax deduction

Bolster Sustainability

  • Food recovery helps reduce food waste, America’s largest waste stream

  • Organic waste emits methane, which is 21 times more harmful than carbon dioxide*

  • Source reduction and donating food to feed people are the best ways to reduce food waste

Liability Protection

  • The Bill Emerson Good Samaritan Act protects all good faith food donors from liability

  • Thousands of businesses, universities, and even the federal government donate surplus food regularly

Learn more about food waste management with these resources:

If you would like to donate to Athens Food Rescue, you can send us a check to:

Athens Food Rescue, 35 Charles St., Athens, Ohio  45701

You can also donate to Athens Food Rescue by giving directly to The Foundation for Appalachian Ohio in our name. Gifts to the Athens Food Rescue Fund are tax deductible and can be made in many ways, including cash, bequests, and life insurance.  You can find more about how to do this here.