Scenes from a recent Saturday afternoon glean at the farmer’s market. Gleaning is a practice that goes way back; in fact, it’s mentioned in the Book of Ruth. Yup, Ruth was an OG Gleaner. Anyway, the custom was to take the remains of a harvest and use it primarily for the poor who had little or no means of supporting themselves. These disenfranchised people were often the widows and the elderly who had lost their husbands or relatives due to death or abandonment and had no other way to survive. So I work with as a Glean Team Leader for a wonderful nonprofit called Food Forward, and we go into farmers markets and ask the vendors if they would like to donate any of their unsold produce to be given to underprivileged families. So awesome.
My grant writing side gig highlighted how complex and unwieldy getting goods and services to people in need can be, and at some point I pivoted from trying to secure money for nonprofits to being the one that delivered the money to the people in need. So this summer I started my own nonprofit foundation with the singular purpose of granting scholarships to Title 1 high school students in the Los Angeles area.