Responding to COVID-19
FareStart and its Catalyst Kitchens members produce over 800,000 meals per week to meet the newly increased demand for hunger relief at shelters, hospitals, senior centers, and more.
The Catalyst Kitchens team is providing relevant resources, customizing consulting offerings, hosting virtual conversations, and securing national funding for our member network.
As the economic effects of COVID-19 continue to spread, millions of people living paycheck to paycheck are now unemployed, shelters are experiencing dramatic spikes in the number of people seeking emergency housing, and many of our most vulnerable neighbors have lost access to food.
FareStart and its Catalyst Kitchens members with existing food security programs are ramping up to meet rapidly growing demand.
FareStart's Catalyst Kitchens Network
Across North America, the Catalyst Kitchens National Member Network is preparing and delivering over 800,000 meals per week to emergency shelters, hospitals, recovery centers, and quarantined isolation sites.
Catalyst Kitchens member organizations are:
Hiring program alumni and displaced industry professionals to support emergency meal production
Collaborating with local restaurant communities to join forces around feeding vulnerable populations
Delivering prepared meals to vulnerable populations or those without access to transportation
Assembling nutritious take-home meal kits and providing grocery boxes for pick up
Revamping restaurant, cafe, or other retail space to serve as production kitchens for hunger relief efforts
Creating community food maps to track the changing landscape of publicly available meals for the food insecure
Finding creative ways to provide culinary training in a remote capacity through online learning modules, take-home assignments, and connecting students to digital resources
Providing a continuum of care through case management, addiction recovery, and other support services over the phone or through virtual platforms
Catalyst Kitchens Consulting Support and Resources
FareStart’s Catalyst Kitchens team has quickly pivoted to guide and support members in relief and response efforts to the COVID-19 crisis nationally. Some of these efforts include:
Pro Bono Technical Assistance:
technical assistance and training free of charge for organizations responding to COVID-19 relief efforts
Educational Tools & Resources:
Our Emergency and Mitigation Toolkit designed to guide members through crisis response and management.
A curated COVID-19 resource page dedicated to emergency response efforts updated on a continuous basis.
Weekly virtual discussion groups focused on COVID-19 response for members, which creates a platform for collaboration and sharing of innovative response initiatives.
A members-only Slack channel to share best practices and resources around COVID-19 response.
Seeking Financial & In-Kind Support:
Collecting of emergency funding resources for members.
Attracting national funders to provide pass-through funds to members in need of increased donations.
A call for in-kind donations to members for needed emergency response items.
How You Can Help:
"I am amazed by the resiliency of FareStart’s Catalyst Kitchens members, who are finding resourceful ways to serve their communities in response to COVID-19. We are hearing from members that what they value most right now is our support and the resources that our network can attract to help them pivot."
- Renée Martin, Managing Director of Catalyst Kitchens & Vice President of National Initiatives at FareStart
Donate to FareStart and Its Catalyst Kitchens Initiative
FareStart's COVID-19 Response & Recovery Fund is designed to meet emergency food needs. Your donation will provide meals now, ensure ongoing care for vulnerable populations, and support future FareStart programs and services, including its national initiative Catalyst Kitchens.
We are asking third party vendors to consider donating products that will support our members in responding to the staggering hunger relief needs throughout the country. We're seeking in-kind donations in the following areas:
Meal packaging: to-go containers for meals and beverages, disposable utensils, cooler bags for home deliveries, and 8" aluminum containers
Personal protective equipment: masks, gloves, hand sanitizer, and disinfectant products
Food donations: including but not limited to shelf-stable food, bread, coffee, single package snacks, and grocery gift cards
Technical support to provide virtual learning: software, hardware, laptops, tablets, and smartphones
Home office supplies