Res halls give leftovers

Anna Kwidzinska

Every breakfast, lunch and dinner, the residence hall cafeterias face a dilemma concerning excess food. This year they have teamed up with an outside organization, to take care of the problem — and feed the hungry.

Campus Kitchens is a food salvaging and distributing program found in various universities around the country. In a three-way contract between Campus Kitchens, Marquette and Sodexho, Marquette’s food service provider, the program will provide different community organizations with meals.

“We take the unused food from campus dining halls and send it out to individuals and organizations who need food,” said Kristen Gustafson, director of Campus Kitchens at Marquette. “It is a food recycling program that attempts to bring universities together with the community. We use food as a tool to strengthen.”

“We are donating what we have to the Campus Kitchens program,” Sodexho chef Doug Marzack said. “I think it’s excellent. It helps feed the hungry, we utilize our leftovers and everybody wins.”

Campus Kitchens is one of eight programs of the D.C. Central Kitchen in Washington, D.C. It began at St. Louis University two years ago.

Kate Brice, a junior at Marquette and an intern with Campus Kitchens, transferred from St. Louis University, where she was involved with Campus Kitchens. She helped start the program here.

“When I got here I started contacting people and calling people to get things started,” Brice said. “It’s an excellent program. You go to certain places and you get to know the people you’re serving.”

The program began at Marquette on Oct. 23 with a jambalaya cook-off. It is now taking the excess food from Cobeen Hall cafeteria and donating it to several community groups, including the Family House, a senior care center. The food is prepared Mondays and Wednesdays between 7 and 9 p.m. It is delivered Tuesdays and Thursdays at around 2 p.m. The first delivery was Oct. 30.

According to Gustafson, Campus Kitchens would like to add a weekend shift and expand their program to Nativity Jesuit Middle School as well as other community programs.

“When we had our kickoff, we donated the food to Midnight Run,” Gustafson said. “We really want to partner with other programs that are in place. We want to bridge some gaps.”