Donate Extra and Leftover Food Waste

Each year 25% – 40% of food produced is wasted, while one in seven DC households is struggling with hunger. It doesn’t have to be this way, and you can be a part of the solution.

Pret a MangerHow Restaurants & Caterers Can Help

Thrive DC serves over 137,000 meals each year. Our ability to serve our clients healthy and filling meals is dependent on partners like you.

For example, Pret a Manger donates 100,000 sandwiches and salad bowls a year to our homeless and low-income clients.

Food items that are especially helpful:

  • Sandwiches
  • Salads
  • Protein
  • Coffee, Tea, Hot Chocolate

How Stores Can Help

Thrive DC can serve one meal for $1.80. We keep our costs low by partnering with stores and supermarkets to get good, healthy food donated.

If you have extra food or food that is nearing its sell by date, you can donate it to Thrive DC. We are in special need of:

  • Meat and other protein
  • Fresh fruit
  • Fresh vegetables
  • Sliced bread
  • Shelf-stable goods, especially “pop top” cans of food

Good Samaritan Law

Many stores and restaurants are worried about liability when donating food to nonprofits, and are concerned that they might be sued if the food they donate causes harm to a client receiving it.

Good news! Under the Bill Emerson Good Samaritan Food Donation Act, businesses donating to a nonprofit in good faith are protected from liability.

Guidelines For Donating Food

To protect our clients, Thrive DC has very strict guidelines for what kind of food it can accept. Before inquiring about donating, please review the guidelines below and see if you are able to meet our strict criteria for food safety.

Food Recovery Guidelines – Quick Reference Sheet
Food Recovery Guidelines


Unfortunately, we are not able to pick up donations. But you can bring things to us at our location in Columbia Heights Monday – Friday, 8:00 AM – 6:00 PM. Before you come, please let our staff listed below know to expect you! If you are unable to get to us during normal operating hours, we would be happy to talk about setting up a more convenient time for drop offs.

Canned Food Drive

Are you an individual looking to make a difference in your community? See our page on doing a Canned Food Drive!

Canned Food Drive


Ready To Organize?

If you’re ready to organize a donation drive to help our clients, fill out the form below! Our In-Kind Coordinator will follow up with you shortly.


Contact Information

Donation Drive