Food banks are nonprofit charity organizations whose purpose is to gather food to cover the dietary and nutritional needs of families and individuals in need. The distribution of this food is then completed through other nonprofit organizations and entities that directly assist people in need in different communities. The Spanish Federation of Food Banks, or Federación Española de Bancos de Alimentos, currently operates 56 food banks spread throughout the country. Today in this article from ShMadrid, we’ll be talking about where to find food banks in Madrid and the importance of taking the time to do this specific form of volunteer work.
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The Madrid Food Bank and its contributors
The Madrid Food Bank (Banco de Alimentos de Madrid), which belongs to the Federación Española de Bancos de Alimentos, works all year round and receives supplies from different sources. The food industry donates non-perishable products that can’t be sold for different reasons, such as faulty labeling, approaching expiration dates or excess of production. Some agricultural businesses provide fruit and vegetables which, despite being perishable foods, are handled and distributed in a more timely and specific manner than other goods. Mercamadrid contributes by offering warehouses that store the surplus products of different wholesalers, and the Madrid Food Bank also receives donations from the Fondo de Ayuda Europea (FEAD) for disadvantaged individuals. Apart from these regular contributions, they organize timely campaigns where members of the community can participate and help out. Operación Kilo takes place in public spaces such as universities and large businesses and, along with gathering rations, focuses on educating others and making them more conscious of the hunger problem for many individuals and families in society. They also especially focus on teaching kids how to stand in solidarity and avoid wasting food. The Gran Recogida is the largest and most important action event organized by the food banks in which everyone can collaborate either by volunteering or making donations. This event is organized every year at the beginning of December, and last year there were more than 20,000 volunteers and 1,063 stores of different distribution chains and almost 3,000,000 kg of food donations gathered.
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The Madrid Food Bank has its headquarters, offices and warehouse located at Colegio San Fernando at Carretera de Colmenar Km 13.600 (Vía de Servicio) 28049 Madrid. You can also find Delegación del Corredor de Henares at Bulevar Buenos Aires, 3, Polígono Camporroso, 28806 Alcalá de Henares, the Delegación de Mercamadrid at Carretera de Villaverde a Vallecas, Km 3.500, 28053 Madrid, Naves 8, 9 y 10. Lastly is the Delegación Sur Metropolitano at Avda. de las Flores 123-132, 28925 Alcorcón. The Madrid Food Bank is managed completely thanks to the work of volunteers. If you want to collaborate and help out with the important work they do, you can do so in a variety of ways. You can work as a permanent or temporary volunteer, make an monetary contribution or donate food in one of the drives they organize throughout the year. Another option is to help the over 400 nonprofit entities in Madrid that receive and distribute food products to people in need. If you are an agrofood business, there are a number of ways for your business to get involved as well.
*Main photo by Earthworm via VisualHunt
Are you thinking of collaborating or volunteering with a food bank in Madrid?