—Leftovers

Reduce food waste and increase access. We work with volunteers, donors, and service agencies across Canada to rescue and redirect food.

Leftovers Hero Image

—The Leftovers Foundation is one of Canada’s largest tech-enabled food rescue organizations. Whether you are a volunteer, business owner, or donor, there is a program for you.

The Leftovers Foundation is committed to reducing food waste, increasing access, and developing innovative, industry-leading social venture programs that change the way people think about sustainability. Our mission is to grow across Canada and provide an opportunity for hardworking volunteers, partners, donors, and service agencies to realize their visions – a world free of poverty, food waste, and environmental harm. 

Our social venture programs are changing the way people think about sustainability. Help us rescue food, increase access, and protect our environment.

We provide opportunities for individuals to donate their time volunteering, food, financial resources, and expertise in various ways.

In 2020, 596,755 pounds of food were redirected from the landfill to our community members and neighbours who need it.

Over 314 Thousand Meals Stat

314,321 meals provided in 2020

Over 1.2 Million Stat

$1,235,283 saved

4776 Routes

4,776 routes completed

Join our community to rescue food, protect our environment, and fight poverty. You can get involved as a food donor, a service agency, financial donor, or a volunteer.

Lourdes Juan was inspired to start The Leftovers Foundation after witnessing how much unsold bread a single bakery in Calgary had at closing time. Shocked that there was so much good food going to waste, when so many people desperately needed food, Lourdes created Leftovers.

An Eye-Opening Experience

Back in 2012, I was asked by a cousin to help pick up excess bread from a local bakery that was going to be thrown out. The bakery had a policy to donate food at the end of their day because they would bake more than was needed, every morning, to fill their shelves – people want to buy from businesses with full, aesthetically pleasing displays. The bakery recognized that they didn’t want any fresh food to go waste, so they developed an ‘End of Day Giving Program.’ When I arrived, there was about 200 lbs. of bread, which basically took up the entire front of the store. My cousin could only take a couple bags worth for the charity he was donating to, so we were left with 100 to 175 lbs. I had no idea where to bring it, but I think the initial shock of seeing that much bread was really eye-opening for someone who doesn’t come from the restaurant or non-profit sector. We took the rest to the drop-in centre, where I knew we could donate food after work hours. When we got there, the gentleman at the loading dock told me they would use the bread by noon the next day – they were serving 3,000 meals a day.

 

The Early Days

It shocked me that many people in our city could use the food, and it was just going to be thrown out if we hadn’t been there to rescue it. The gears started turning in my head about how we could mobilize a lot of people to pick up from different locations and get this food to the people and organizations that could use it. I was a small business owner at the time, I didn’t have an office of my own, so I would work in coffee shops. I remember sticking around and asking if they could donate what they didn’t sell by the end of the day so I could take it to service agencies. That was the foundation of how Leftovers operates today. We take food from different donors, and we make sure that it gets to service agencies. Leftovers has morphed into – not only donating tonnes of food – but a way to creatively repurpose food that service agencies can’t take.

 

Community Mobilization

The community in Calgary has been really supportive. It was enough that we were able to take flight in Edmonton. Community mobilization helped us find that success and enable us to expand further into Winnipeg and Hinton as well. We’re taking a straightforward model and replicating it in areas where food can be rescued and used to serve people.

Leftovers has really made a dent in the world of food waste and rescue, not just from a per-pound perspective, but from an awareness perspective. We need to start thinking differently about food waste, particularly around climate change. When food goes into a landfill, it emits methane, a far worse pollutant than carbon dioxide. We need to start thinking about the entire food systems picture – who has access to food, who doesn’t, and the types of food available in different communities.

I see Leftovers as a nimble organization. We can incubate pilot programs that shake up our food systems by coming from a dignified approach to how we get food to people in need. Community mobilization is an important tenement of Leftovers. We’re not 10 people sitting around a table trying to figure out how to fix a broken food system. We’re every person, volunteer, donor, and service agency coming together to be a part of this food rescue movement.

Board of Directors

Lourdes_Headshot

Lourdes Juan

Founder & Director

Audra Headshot

Audra Stevenson

Interim CEO

Shannon Headshot

Shannon
Ramdin

Board Chair

Teresa Headshot

Teresa Goldstein

Vice Chair

Mark Headshot

Mark
Hildebrand

Treasurer

Shawna Headshot

Shawna
Perron

Secretary

Keltie Headshot

Keltie
Gower

Director

Kristi Headshot

Kristi
Lalach

Director

Thomas Headshot

Thomas
Dyer

Director

Dana Headshot

Dana
Silver

Director

Kate Headshot

Kate
Godfrey

Director

Lourdes_Headshot

Lourdes
Juan

Founder & Director

Audra Headshot

Audra
Stevenson

Interim CEO

Shannon Headshot

Shannon
Ramdin

Board Chair

Teresa Headshot

Teresa
Goldstein

Vice Chair

Mark Headshot

Mark
Hildebrand

Treasurer

Shawna Headshot

Shawna
Perron

Secretary

Keltie Headshot

Keltie
Gower

Director

Kristi Headshot

Kristi
Lalach

Director

Thomas Headshot

Thomas
Dyer

Director

Dana Headshot

Dana
Silver

Director

Kate Headshot

Kate
Godfrey

Director

Lourdes_Headshot

Lourdes
Juan

Founder & Director 

Audra Headshot

Audra
Stevenson

Interim CEO

Shannon Headshot

Shannon
Ramdin

Board Chair

Teresa Headshot

Teresa
Goldstein

Vice Chair

Mark Headshot

Mark
Hildebrand

Treasurer         

Shawna Headshot

Shawna
Perron

Secretary

Keltie Headshot

Keltie
Gower

Director 

Kristi Headshot

Kristi
Lalach

Director 

Thomas Headshot

Thomas
Dyer

Director            

Dana Headshot

Dana
Silver

Director 

Kate Headshot

Kate
Godfrey

Director 

Leadership Team

Kyra Headshot

Kyra
Cusveller

VP Engagement

Ania Headshot

Ania
Karzynska

VP Finance

Shelby Headshot

Shelby
Montgomery

VP Programs

Darany Headshot

Darany
Touch

VP IDEA & Administration

Emily Headshot

Emily
Vilcsak

VP Marketing & Communications

Kyra Headshot

Kyra
Cusveller

VP Engagement

Ania Headshot

Ania
Karzynska

VP Finance

Shelby Headshot

Shelby
Montgomery

VP Programs

Darany Headshot

Darany
Touch

VP IDEA & Administration

Emily Headshot

Emily
Vilcsak

VP Marketing & Communications

Kyra Headshot

Kyra
Cusveller

VP Engagement

Ania Headshot

Ania
Karzynska

VP Finance

Shelby Headshot

Shelby
Montgomery

VP Programs      

Darany Headshot

Darany
Touch

VP IDEA & Administration

Emily Headshot

Emily
Vilcsak

VP Marketing & Communications

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