Urban Gleaners helps feed Portland students

By reusing the leftover food from local grocery stores, business cafeterias and event spaces, Urban Gleaners is able to feed 6,000 students every day.

PORTLAND, Ore. -- Tracy Oseran is trying to solve a complex problem in a very simple way -- and she's doing a fantastic job. At Urban Gleaners the mission is to get unused food, that would otherwise go to waste, to those who are hungry.

Tracy and her team of volunteers accomplish this by repackaging unused food and taking it to 25 schools around the city of Portland.

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How do they get the food? They ask for it. By reusing the leftover food from local grocery stores, business cafeterias and event spaces, Urban Gleaners is able to feed 6,000 students every day in a state where nearly 300,000 students participate in the free or reduced lunch program and 1 in 5 people live with food insecurities.

Urban Gleaners began after Tracy heard a report on the radio about a woman in Boston who collected unused food from grocery stores and brought it to people on the street. Through the help of her family and many volunteers it has grown into a business that provides an essential need for thousands of people in the Portland community.