"Profits and Progress"
American University student Maria Rose Belding (BS public health '19) has been named a CNN Hero – joining the ranks of more than 300 “everyday people changing the world” who have been honored by CNN for their efforts to make the world a better place. Belding was recognized for her work to get excess food to hungry Americans. Belding, who grew up working in her church’s food pantry in rural Iowa, believes it should be easy for those with excess food to share it with people who are hungry. But at the pantry, she regularly saw overstocks of food that went to waste, while other types of foods were desperately needed. There was no way to coordinate with other food pantries, or with organizations that had excess food. Belding was in high school when she first brainstormed the idea of building an online food database to connect food donors with organizations that needed food. But it wasn’t until her first year at American University that she launched the Matching Excess and Need for Stability MEANS DATABASE, a free online network that connects thousands of food pantries, soup kitchens, and other non-profits with donors of surplus food. The donors include grocery stores, caterers, food retailers, and even other food pantries. In all, approximately 3,000 groups are involved in the MEANS database.
Wednesday, March 20, 2019 at 5:30pm
Griswold Communications Center