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Happy Apples #1

Welcome to Day Five of Leftovers’ journey into food rescue from the food’s perspective! (Missed Day Four? Check it out here!) Last week we met the Happy Apples as part of Russell’s holiday meal. But where did they come from? Read on, friends, and let’s get to know this phenomenal fruit!

The start of our Happy Apples’ journey into Rescue Food looks a bit different from our beloved Russell’s…

In spring and summer, life was a breeze. Going from being a beautiful flower to being a tiny little apple, getting bigger in the warm sun. Just hanging with my whole apple family, watching the good folks who owned our tree playing with their kiddos in the yard below us.
Then… some of us started to fall… The ones on the ground got brown and bruised and stepped on, crushed to mush. Uh oh! Every time the wind waggled my branch, I got more and more scared. Being applesauce was one thing, but being smashed on the grass? Not how I wanted to go!
The good folks in the yard didn’t have time to pick us all. What were we going to do?

How did these appealing apples avoid being stomped into smoosh? Find out in the next and final installment of our story!

Harvest season on the prairies might be short, but every summer and fall, backyard gardens and fruit trees produce a bounty of delicious, healthy food. A single apple tree alone can produce 100 to 500 lbs of fresh apples–or more!! And those apples, when picked from the tree, can keep for up to six months in the fridge (1). That’s a big fruit commitment! So what happens when the growers don’t have the time to pick or space to store all of that good food?

That’s where Leftovers comes in! In 2022, our growers and volunteers harvested more than 4000 lbs of fresh produce from backyard gardens and fruit trees in Calgary and Edmonton. Since the Home Harvest program began in 2020, we’ve redirected rhubarb, lettuce, tomatoes, cherries, grapes, and apples galore!

Harvesting backyard produce is a big job, even with ladders and fruit pickers, and we couldn’t do it without our amazing Home Harvest volunteers! Every harvest keeps amazing produce grown right in our own communities from rotting on the ground, and gets fresh, healthy food to neighbours who need it.

Donate now to support Leftovers’ programs and get good food–including backyard produce–to the people who need it most. 

(1) Ma, K. (2019). Alberta is for apples. St. Albert Gazette. Retrieved from https://www.stalbertgazette.com/local-news/alberta-is-for-apples-1679877

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COVID-19 Update

Hello Leftovers Partners and Volunteers,

Your commitment to reducing food waste and increasing food access in our community is so incredibly valued – THANK YOU!

Due to COVID-19, many businesses are temporarily shutting their doors and cancelling events. As a result, we have seen a significant change in the frequency and volume of donations. At the same time, access to food has never been more difficult for many members of our community. Whether it’s students who have been isolated from their only meals of the day, seniors who are at-risk every time they leave home, or the many who have recently lost their jobs due to this crisis, we are seeing an unprecedented need for access to food.

  • Please ensure that all donations are covered/wrapped.
  • Please wear a mask and wash your hands/use sanitizer frequently when handling food donations. Do not touch the food itself. Contact help@rescuefood.ca if you’d like a reuseable mask.
  • Practice no-contact drop offs at agencies (ensure that the food is in a safe/covered area).
  • Do not rescue food if you and/or someone that you have been in contact with is not feeling well, has travelled within 14 days, or been in contact with a confirmed case of the Coronavirus.

We are posting changes/cancellations to food donation routes on the app as they come in. All routes that are posted on the app are as up-to-date as possible. If a donor or agency tells you they’d like to cancel or change hours, please email this feedback to heidi@rescuefood.ca (Calgary), nicole@rescuefood.ca (Edmonton) or juliakraemer@rescuefood.ca (Winnipeg) so we can update the app.

If you have any questions at all, please email us at help@rescuefood.ca. Thank you so much for your help and willingness to be there for our community!

Kin Volunteer

We’re currently recruiting volunteers who want to help serve coffee and be a part of a fun new social initiative.

  • Volunteer shifts are 4 hours long
  • Shifts are either 7am-11am or 11am-3pm
  • 2 people are needed per shift, so sign up with your partner or a friend
  • You can volunteer as little or as much as you’d like
  • Sign-ups will be live on the Leftovers Rescue Food app soon

There will be a mandatory in-person training for all new Kin volunteers. This training will be brief, but will go over setup & tear down, food safety, POS terminal instruction and PWYW info.

If you’re interested in volunteering, please send an email to kin@rescuefood.ca expressing which shift and dates you’re interested in covering.

*Please note that all Kin volunteers need to be vaccinated as per YMCA and AHS Covid Policy.*

National Day for Truth and Reconciliation

Friday, September 30th

Today we are observing the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation. We encourage you to read the 94 Calls to Action and commit to working towards at least one of them.

You can also donate to the Indian Residential School Survivors Society.

COVID-19 Guidelines - Growers

Hello Growers,
THANK YOU for your commitment to reducing food waste and helping those experiencing food insecurity!
Below are some COVID guidelines to keep in mind when requesting a harvest:
  • CANCEL YOUR HARVEST REQUEST if you and/or someone that you have been in contact with is not feeling well, has travelled within 14 days, has been in close contact with a confirmed case of the Coronavirus, or are awaiting test results.
  • If you choose to keep some of the harvested food, please WASH IT BEFORE CONSUMING.
  • Please avoid contact with harvest volunteers. If you do interact with them in person, please ensure you MAINTAIN PHYSICAL DISTANCE AND WEAR A MASK
If you have any questions at all, please email us at help@rescuefood.ca. Thank you so much for your help and willingness to be there for our community!

COVID-19 Guidelines

Hello Volunteers,
THANK YOU for your commitment to reducing food waste and helping those experiencing food insecurity!
Below are some COVID guidelines to keep in mind while harvesting on behalf of Home Harvest:
  • You must SIGN A WAIVER prior to attending a harvest
  • Volunteers who sign up in the app must keep a record of everyone who attends each harvest with them so that they can be notified if needed for contact-tracing purposes
  • Please WEAR A MASK throughout the harvest and WASH YOUR HANDS/USE HAND SANITIZER before and after the harvest (and during, if necessary). Contact help@rescuefood.ca if you’d like a reusable mask.
  • PHYSICAL DISTANCING MUST BE PRACTICED AT ALL TIMES. Please ensure you maintain physical distance from individuals not in your cohort, including other harvest volunteers and growers. 
  • DO NOT HARVEST FOOD if you and/or someone that you have been in close contact with is not feeling well, has travelled within 14 days, has been in contact with a confirmed case of the Coronavirus, or are awaiting test results.
  • SANITIZE SURFACES you come in contact with (fences, gates, tools, equipment) before and after the harvest.
  • LEAVE NO TRACE. Please take home any sanitizing equipment, masks and garbage created throughout the pick. 
  • Practice NO CONTACT DROP OFFS at agencies (ensure that the food is in a safe/covered area).
  • Bags or boxes that you are using to contain/transport the harvested food do not need to be sterilized, but please ensure they are clean.
Please Note: Volunteers are not responsible for washing fruit before donation to charities. Charities that accept fruit donations will be responsible for fruit washing before food preparation and/or eating.
If you have any questions at all, please email us at help@rescuefood.ca. Thank you so much for your help and willingness to be there for our community!
Hello Growers,
THANK YOU for your commitment to reducing food waste and helping those experiencing food insecurity!
Below are some COVID guidelines to keep in mind when requesting a harvest:
  • CANCEL YOUR HARVEST REQUEST if you and/or someone that you have been in contact with is not feeling well, has travelled within 14 days, has been in close contact with a confirmed case of the Coronavirus, or are awaiting test results.
  • If you choose to keep some of the harvested food, please WASH IT BEFORE CONSUMING.
  • Please avoid contact with harvest volunteers. If you do interact with them in person, please ensure you MAINTAIN PHYSICAL DISTANCE AND WEAR A MASK
If you have any questions at all, please email us at help@rescuefood.ca. Thank you so much for your help and willingness to be there for our community!

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