UCHealth University of Colorado Hospital combats food insecurity through partnership with local nonprofit

The hospital began partnering with nonprofit We Don’t Waste in 2013.
Pantry food.
The hospitals donations add up to more than 61,000 servings of uneaten food. / Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

UCHealth University of Colorado Hospital donated 15,000 pounds of uneaten food to local nonprofit We Don’t Waste last year.  

The donations add up to more than 61,000 servings of uneaten breads, proteins, frozen meals, fresh fruits, vegetables, sauces and condiments, according to a statement.

We Don’t Waste, a food recovery organization that redistributes excess food to people in need, has been the hospital's partner since 2013. Each Tuesday, the dining team at the hospital gathers up at least 250 servings of excess foods. The nonprofit then distributes the food to its partner agencies that, in turn, provide it to community food banks, pantries, soup kitchens, shelters and more across the Denver area. Each year, the organization serves approximately half a million people.

“We’ve been donating food to We Don’t Waste since I started working at UCHealth,” said John O’Brien, executive chef for the hospital’s food and nutrition department, in a statement. “It’s such a simple way to help people in our community.”

We Don’t Waste expects that a record number of Colorado residents will soon need food assistance, due to inflation and the recent reduction of emergency SNAP benefits. The organization estimates that one in three Colorado residents could face food insecurity in their lifetime.

“UCHealth has been an incredible partner to We Don’t Waste and has helped up provide consistent food access to our neighbors experiencing food insecurity across the Denver metro area,” said Arlan Preblud, executive director of We Don’t Waste. “After ten years of partnership, we can’t even begin to count how many thousands of people we’ve impacted through this food. It provides our neighbors with comfort, health, energy and so much more.”



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