The Share Table

The Share Table is a place where students can place unopened and/or sealed food that they choose not to eat during school breakfast and lunch in a basket, providing an opportunity for other students to take additional helpings of food that would otherwise be thrown away.  While serving a greater need for nutrition within schools, these tables will also help in the reduction of food waste. 

Share tables also complement the educational mission of schools. Whether we acknowledge it or not, the lunch room is a classroom, and students learn lessons there, either by intention or attrition. Habituating children to share their uneaten food is also a public health “nudge” that can influence dietary choices at home and the behavior patterns they will carry into adulthood.*

Share tables also cultivate an ethic of empathy, looking out for one another, and building a strong, connected school community among the student body. And they prevent “hangry” kids from being too distracted to learn.*

The DC Food Project team has sought guidance from Food and Nutrition Services regarding student meal delivery in an effort to ensure student meals meet applicable nutrition standards.

To learn more about how you can start a Share Table at your school contact us and we can help you get started! 

* Civil Eats: School Lunch Share Table Fight Food Waste and Hunger


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Walking out of school with our baskets yesterday, multiple staff members stopped me to praise the program and express gratitude for the difference it has made at the school. One teacher told me that she felt tremendous appreciation as she watched students who are chronically hungry turn to pieces of fruit during the day rather than looking for chips and other junk food.
— K Degan, Parent & Food Waste Advocate