Every day perfectly good, healthy food is thrown away across the United States. So a non-profit organization out of Pinellas County is taking that food, cooking it up, and delivering it by way of food truck to people living in poverty.
The organization is 360 Eats, and their truck is called Sustain-A-Bowl.
Cameron Macleish takes the orders while Ellen does the cooking, and together this mother-and-son duo is changing lives.
“A lot of people who are new to the service will come up to the food truck, and they don’t believe us at first,” founder and executive director Cameron said. “They think there has to be some catch cause it’s free, it’s gourmet and it’s made with love.”
Cameron’s goal was to bridge the gap between food waste and food insecurity.
“So this is food that, for whatever reason, is still perfectly good, but the grocery stores, the food distributors, etc. don’t plan to actually sell, so we receive it as a donation,” Cameron said.
“You know, many of them have to choose between whether they are going to get medication or pay for groceries, especially with the cost of inflation,” said Samuel White with the Clearwater Housing Authority.
Cameron also said by using a food truck, there’s a sense of dignity you may not feel at a shelter or food pantry.
“Food trucks are fun, they’re exciting, and that’s exactly what we want people to feel when they receive these meals,” he added.
It was all made possible within the last year thanks to a $40,000 grant courtesy of the Community Foundation of Tampa Bay.
“I got to tell you this is why we do what we do,” said Katie Shultz with the Community Foundation of Tampa Bay. “We work with philanthropically minded individuals in our community who give to the Community Foundation of Tampa Bay, and this is exactly why they give.”