A day in the life of Kaibosh Food Rescue

Featuring the community of people who make it all happen!

Sarah Macdonald, volunteer for The Good Registry, was lucky to spend a day with Kaibosh Food Rescue — taking photos and capturing stories.

Like most Wellingtonions, Sarah had always been impressed by Kaibosh from afar so was intrigued to learn more. Sarah discovered there is so much more to Kaibosh than rescuing food; it’s the people and community that make Kaibosh such a Wellington treasure!

Kaibosh is the link between the food industry and those that support people in need, benefiting our community as well as the environment. Food is donated to Kaibosh, which then collects and distributes it.

Here’s a behind the scenes glimpse of Kaibosh Food Rescue Wellington, on 25 October 2019.

9:00am-11:30am: Charities collect their food

Pick n Mix. This morning nine charities came through Kaibosh’s doors, collecting their pre-ordered food boxes and surplus food items. Rowan, who collects for the Miramar Foodbank (which operates out of St Aidan's Church) is seen here sorting through My Food Bag sachets to add to her collection.

Kaibosh provides this service at no cost to food donors or these community groups. This allows community groups to focus their limited resources on providing valuable services, like the Wellington Homeless Women’s Trust. Deb from the Homeless Women’s Trust collected her trolley-load of food to take back so residents can cook with it.

Deb says the Wellington Homeless Women’s Trust is grateful to Kaibosh for supplying “an abundance of kai and aroha, which has encouraged the beautiful wāhine to learn new recipes with a variety of delicious foods.”

Martin Andrews, Kaibosh’s Operations Manager, ensures the smooth running of the morning and makes sure everything is ready for collection. Marty enjoys having a quick chat and catchup with people as they arrive — it’s this sense of community that is really special about Kaibosh.

11am-11:30am: Food arrives from Kaibosh’s first food run

A well-oiled machine! Like clockwork, the Kaibosh van arrives at its scheduled time with its first load of boxes from the morning food run. These boxes are quickly unloaded and stored to make room for the next food run. A wide range of healthy, nutritious food turned up — including dairy products, vegetables, bread and fruit.

11:30am-1:30pm: Rescue mission!

On the road again. Felicia and Peter are now off to New World and Countdown supermarkets in central Wellington, Karori and Croften Downs to collect food, which has been put aside for Kaibosh. Stopping quality food from being thrown out and going to landfill significantly cuts down the amount of carbon emissions entering the atmosphere — another one of the many benefits of Kaibosh!

Within two hours they’ve collected a truckload of food! Every box is recorded on a tally after collection — one supermarket donated nine boxes today alone.

Today Felicia collected food from 11 food donors.

1:30pm: Charity food dropoff

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What it’s all about! Food boxes from the van run are dropped off to Junior at DCM (Downtown Community Ministry). DCM has been working in Wellington for 50 years, and has adopted the byline ‘together, we can end homelessness in Wellington’. DCM works with people to find and sustain housing, access a benefit and manage their money, and to connect to whānau, health and other services and support.

Michelle Scott from DCM says: “Food is one of the many ways in which we can support people. When people are rough sleeping, we welcome them at our Te Hāpai space, offering them kai and hospitality as we build a relationship and begin planning for them to access housing and greater wellbeing. Kai from Kaibosh makes it possible for us to offer them this hospitality every day. Then when we house people from homelessness, after paying rent and power, they often have very few dollars left. Kai from Kaibosh enables us to support them with groceries and to stock their cupboards, as we work together to ensure that they are able to sustain their tenancies.”

5:30pm-6:15pm: Sorting the day’s food

Zero Food Poverty, Zero Food Waste! Back at Kaibosh for the last stage in the food journey today.

A team of dedicated volunteers methodically sort through the food from today’s food collection. They sort it all out into cardboard boxes, happily chatting as they go. Each box is then weighed and recorded. Any damaged or inedible foods are put into various recycling bins — literally, nothing goes to waste here!

Kaibosh volunteeer Rachel Milne says: “What I love about Kaibosh is it solves two problems at once by reducing waste and helping those who need food. I was motivated to help out because it’s a great initiative that just makes so much sense. There should be more of this in every town in the country!

“It’s a rewarding thing to be a part of and it just takes two hours a fortnight. You really feel like you’ve helped the community, which is a great way to start my weekend. And the shifts fly by when you’re chatting with other volunteers. It’s a really nice atmosphere and I am glad to be able to help out.

“Also, the interesting thing is how much food is wasted or unable to be sold because of a minor fault, for example, one bad item in a prepackaged bag, or a small blemish you could just cut off. I’m glad Kaibosh is helping to put this right.”

Kaibosh volunteers have a direct and positive impact on their community and environment and Kaibosh simply wouldn’t be able to operate without their 200 valued volunteers (at both their Wellington City and Hutt City branches).

6pm –6:30pm: Sparkly clean!

There’s a lovely energy and efficiency at every stage of the Kaibosh journey.

Once all the boxes are sorted and stored, the team clean every surface — ready for a busy new day at Kaibosh tomorrow.

Kaibosh’s Wellington Operations Manager Martin Andrews says: “People are at the heart of Kaibosh’s work. We’re only able to do what we do because of the incredible generosity of the wider Wellington and Hutt Valley community. Our volunteers, food donors, staff, the community groups we work with, and the many organisations, businesses and individuals who support us — everyone works really hard to make sure quality food isn’t needlessly discarded, instead reaching those who need it most.”

Kaibosh rescues and sorts food 7 days a week, delivering up to 30,000kg of quality surplus food each month! If you’re interested in donating to Kaibosh you can set up a Good Registry or purchase a Good Gift Card.

*Our thanks to the wonderful Sarah Macdonald, for her words and photos. You can see more of Sarah’s work on her website.

About The Good Registry

The Good Registry is a social giving platform where anyone from small kids to big corporates can give the gift of giving with charitable donations instead of unwanted gifts.

We have created two simple ways to give and receive the gift of giving through our website:

  • Create your own Good Registry for a special event and ask friends to donate to a charity you choose (like Kaibosh!), instead of buying gifts.
  • Give Good Gift Cards instead of traditional gifts, to avoid unwanted gifts, reduce waste, and enable others to make donations to charities they care about.

You can hear from people and businesses who have used Good Registries and Good Gift Cards to give more simply and sustainably, and to help good causes like Kaibosh, on our inspirational Giving Wall.

Revolutionising giving - for simplicity, social good and zero waste. Join the good gift revolution at thegoodregistry.com

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