(Food Redistribution Around Gloveville, Elyria-Swansea)

The Collaborative is a partnership between

The GrowHaus, Denver Food Rescue, and Birdseed Collective

$1.50 = one meal

FORAGES came about because community residents asked for it.  The collaborative is working to improve community health through increasing access to healthy foods in Elyria-Swansea and Globeville.  This is accomplished through a weekly redistribution of grocery store food that would otherwise go to waste.  Highly perishable goods, such as fruits and vegetables, are immediately distributed to those in the greatest need.  The GrowHaus and Birdseed Collective serve as local distribution points, eliminating lengthy bus rides or car trips to the nearest food bank.  This method is innovative, community-based, and dedicated to helping Denver’s under served food deserts increase access to produce. 

How it works:

  • Once a week, Denver Food Rescue delivers food to The GrowHaus and Birdseed Collective by bike

  • Resident employees and volunteers organize the food into a marketplace

  • Community members peruse the marketplace and take home produce free of charge

  • Cooking classes are offered during distribution

  • Mobile delivery to the home-bound ensures that those who are not able to access services receive produce weekly

The Impact:

  • To date, Denver Food Rescue has donated 47,600 pounds of food to The GrowHaus' Cosechando Salud and the Globeville Free Grocery Program.  This donation equates to over 42,000 meals

  • 2,431 people have received free, healthy produce

  • Four Community resident jobs have been created to manage the food distribution programs

  • Over 50 hours of classroom cooking instruction have been offered

  • A mobile delivery service has been added to ensure that those with disabilities have access to fresh produce

  • Community involvement has increased, volunteers help prep and clean for classes

  • The distribution has become a safe place, creating a connection between neighbors and local organizations

  • Community members serve on the Board of Directors of all three organizations

 The Goals:

  • To support a resident-driven approach to address food security and access issues in a culturally sensitive way;

  • To address the fact that race and income are indicators of access to healthy food by providing healthy free food where no grocery stores are accessible;

  • To assist participants with the added knowledge regarding the health benefits of eating healthy food;

  • To increase healthy food access in neighborhoods with barriers to emergency food providers and healthy food retailers, or increased risk of reliance on unhealthy food retailers

 Plans for this year:

  • We will serve 4,000 GES residents, who will receive 60,000 pounds of food to make 53,000 meals

  • Two more community residents will be hired to coordinate programming

  • Home bound bike delivery will expand to serve 25 people each week

  • Improve outreach and marketing

  • Adding multiple locations/days

Your Donation Supports:

  • $1.50 buys one meal
  • $5 for one pound of food
  • $50 for ingredients for 2 weeks
  • $100 one bike delivery trailer
  • $250 cooking classes for 2 months
  • $500 cooking supplies for one year
  • $1,000 supports one family’s produce for a year
  • $5,000 pays two community employees salary


The Collaborative is in need of funding to keep the program going! 

To hear more, contact a partner

About the Partners:

The growHaus

The GrowHaus is a nonprofit indoor farm, marketplace, and educational center with a goal to provide healthy, affordable food and raise awareness about issues of food justice and sustainability.  We have a mission is to create a community-driven, neighborhood-based food system by serving as a hub for food distribution, education, and production.  We hope to be a catalyst for sustainable, community revitalization that will result in job creation and improve public health.


Denver Food Rescue

Denver Food Rescue is a nonprofit focused on improving health equity outcomes by increasing access to healthy foods in low income areas. We do this by redistributing food from grocery stores, which would otherwise go to waste, directly to Free Grocery Programs. Since we accomplish 75% of our deliveries via bicycle, we are able to focus on direct redistribution which allows us to deliver more highly perishable fruits and vegetables; the foods that are most important in food deserts and food swamps. Our hyperlocal, resident driven model allows us to reach hard-to-access populations, who might not otherwise take advantage of emergency food assistance.


BirdSeed Collective

BirdSeed Collective is a small community & arts organization in Globeville.  One of the direct missions is to create opportunities for positive community and artistic programs in the neighborhood.  Birdseed Collective is committed to running a weekly resident-based program called The Globeville Free Healthy Food Distribution Program.  With a culturally sensitive and education-focused approach, participants receive pounds of healthy food weekly, learn about and try new healthy food options and build community comrade.