Request a Sub: Making Weekly Food Rescues Even Easier

By March 15, 2022Article

At 412 Food Rescue, we do a lot with a little. It’s one of the core ethics of the food rescue movement, and it’s part of doing any social impact work in 2022. There’s so much uncertainty in the world right now and funding is tight for everybody. Most of our work is all by volunteers – our Food Rescue Heroes! We’re a small team of dedicated people who just do it all, no matter how many hours it takes.

Since 87% of surplus food at the retail level is fresh, timing is everything. And there are many steps to getting a single donation of perfectly good, fresh food that’s about to get thrown away, picked up and delivered right away. From identifying best timeframes and a volunteer to pick it up, to ultimately making sure there’s a non-profit nearby that can get it all into the hands of people who need it and can use it all, volunteer management alone can create some of the most time-consuming day-to-day challenges.

That’s why weekly rescues are so wonderful. They’re convenient for our Food Rescue Hero volunteers, because they fit in perfectly with their weekly schedule. They foster meaningful relationships with retail food donors and the nonprofits. And best of all, they’re efficient for the 412 Food Rescue team, because they don’t take a lot of time to coordinate. They just happen.

But weekly volunteers go on vacation, get sick and have appointments. What happens then? And what impact does this have for the  412 Food Rescue dispatcher, who then needs to drop everything and re-juggle the rescue as well? 

The 412 Food Rescue app takes the stress and complexity out of a volunteer’s need to find a sub for a weekly rescue. In the app, there’s a tiny feature that actually does A LOT. It’s called Request a Sub.

Here’s how it works: In that instance that a volunteer can’t make it one week, there’s a button in the 412 Food Rescue app –  Request a Sub. In one click, the rescue automatically gets re-served up as a one-time rescue for any volunteer to claim, just like that. For 412 Food Rescue, it’s pretty helpful.

412 Food Rescue does a lot with a little, mainly because of the great generosity and kindness of the people of Pittsburgh.

Do you run a food rescue outside of the Pittsburgh area? Contact our friends at Food Rescue Hero the engine behind 412 Food Rescue, the fastest growing and largest volunteer food recovery organization in the country. 412 Food Rescue is part of the Food Rescue Hero Network, which aims to expand to 100 cities by 2030.Together we can put an end to food waste and nutrition insecurity.