Staggering data in America shows that 40% of food is wasted, while 1 in 6 families are food insecure. With this said, it's our duty as educators to do our part to actively teach students about this food waste crisis. Here at the Westport Elementary School in Westport, Massachusetts we have been doing our very best to keep food from being tossed away. With a school community of 400+ students we see our fair share of waste.The insight we have gained from the K-12 Food Rescue Program, coupled with our newest Farm to School initiative, students and staff alike are working hard to teach #FoodIsNotTrash.
Students here at the WES are lucky to have a “sharing fridge” that was made possible by our amazing food service workers, led by director Michelle Rapoza. Students are able to donate unwanted, unpeeled, and unwrapped food items that otherwise may have been thrown away. Students may also take from the saved items if they are still hungry at lunch/snack. All food saved is logged at the conclusion of the week and any food that may be spoiled over the weekend is donated to a local family farm for animals to consume. Utilizing this initiative we are thrilled at the opportunity to teach this generation of students that food waste is a huge issue. Our goal is to help them create a new mindset of waste reduction.