Every week day, Augsburg students work on campus and in the neighborhood to make healthy food available through the following programs:
1) Campus Cupboard – A free food shelf on campus run by and for students.
2) Farmers Market Gleaning (Vegetable Rescue) – Every Saturday during the summer and fall, you’ll find us at the Mill City Farmer’s Market, collecting donated produce and distributing it to our neighbors in Cedar-Riverside.
3) Free Community Meals – This is the core of our program, and occupies the majority of our time. Students reheat, repackage, cater, and deliver surplus dining hall food (graciously donated by Augsburg’s dining services) at our non-profit partners in South Minneapolis. Almost all of the meal shifts include a free meal for the volunteers, and most importantly, give students a chance to dine and converse with our neighbors.
Monday – Thursday: Brian Coyle Community Center. Run by Pillsbury United Communities, the Brian Coyle Center serves the Cedar-Riverside neighborhood of Minneapolis with basic needs, self-sufficiency, and youth services. We serve supper to the youth, primarily East African, and staff of the Kids College program every Monday – Thursday. After serving the meal, Campus Kitchen students get to sit down and eat with the youth before cleaning up and returning to campus.
2nd Wednesday of the Month: Trinity Lutheran. The Wednesday Night Supper at Trinity Lutheran Congregation brings congregation members, neighbors, and students together for a communal meal each week with the help of local organizations and volunteers. We serve supper here every second Wednesday of the month.
Thursday: Ebenezer Tower. Ebenezer Tower provides subsidized independent-living to seniors. We deliver packaged lunches to elderly residents at these buildings every Thursday. After packaging meals in the Augsburg kitchen, we knock on the doors of our 50 clients to say hello and deliver the meals. There’s a lot of walking during these shifts, as we carry bags of meals up elevators and down stairs during the shift.
Friday: Ebenezer Tower. On Fridays, we return to Ebenezer Tower to serve the building’s only communal meal of the week. Around 50 residents gather to eat with us, enjoy conversation, and take in the view of the city from the 23rd floor. After serving dinner and making sure everyone receives a meal, we spread out and sit down to chat with the seniors before cleaning up and heading back to campus. Occasionally, students or seniors will sit down at the piano or bring along their guitars to practice, share their favorite songs, or start a sing-along.
4) Fresh Food Distributions. During challenging COVID times, we are supporting our neighbors by distributing healthy food to our community partners including the Brian Coyle Food Shelf, West Bank Community Development Corporation, and People’s Center Clinic. Thank you so much to Loaves and Fishes and Twin Cities Food Justice for providing us with beautiful, healthy food!