Where to Donate Leftovers After Your Party

Where to Donate Leftovers After Your Party 0

In an earlier post, I recommended that you donate leftover food from your party to a local shelter, food bank or program instead of throwing it out or taking it home. You and your guests already had an amazing night, so why not make someone else’s night, right?

To help you on this very worthwhile charitable mission, below are a few sources to help you find a charity in your area. When looking at a charity’s website, the first order of business is to determine whether they take in-kind cooked food donations. Some do not. This information is usually under a tab called something along the lines of “Donate” or “Support” and then under “in-kind donations.”

Feeding America – Feeding America provides a list of food banks by state. You can also search by zip code.

Food Pantries – Food Pantries lists food pantries by state and provides contact information for each pantry.

Great Nonprofits – Great Nonprofits provides a list of homeless and housing shelters and charities located around the United States.

Homeless Shelters Directory – Through an interactive map, HSD provides a list of homeless shelters and service organizations around the United States.

Department of State – You can also check your state’s Department of State website. These often list charitable organizations in the state.

And if you want to research the charity before you make a donation, Charity Navigator is an independent charity evaluator.

If you know of any other good resources, please share them in the comments below.

Happy Planning.

How to Donate Food to a Charity After Your Party

How to Donate Food to a Charity After Your Party 0

It’s 1 am. Your guests are leaving after an evening of good food, dancing and general merry-making. The party was a success. All of your planning has paid off. But there is one more thing: the left over food. Maybe your caterer brought a little extra (as many do) to accommodate healthier-than-expected appetites or maybe your guests danced more than they ate. Whatever the reason, the kitchen is full of food. What should you do?

Some people ask their caterer to pack up the left overs for their guests to take home but we have another idea: make a charitable donation. There are shelters, food banks and non profit organizations that will take cooked food donations and their residents will welcome a change in their daily culinary pace. If this sounds like an option for you, read on.

A month or so before your party, call a few organizations in your area or ask your caterer if they already work with an organization. Ideally, you want an organization that will pick up the donated food on the night of the party from the party location. The next best option is for the organization to pick up the donated food from your caterer’s place of business that night or the next day. Of course, you’ll need to check with your caterer before you make this arrangement. Once you identify the organization, tell your caterer your plan, put them in touch with the organization to iron out the details and ask your planner to be the day-of point person for the donation. If the organization is tax exempt, don’t forget to get a tax deduction letter for your in-kind donation a week or so after the donation.*

Donating food is more convenient for you because you don’t have to take anything with you after the party, it’s better for the environment because the food is not thrown out and it’s great for the recipients (who doesn’t love delicious food). This is a true win-win-win.

Happy Planning!

*Of course, consult with your tax professional before you make any final arrangements.