Combating Hunger, Creating Opportunity

DC Central Kitchen is America's leader in reducing hunger with recycled food, training unemployed adults for culinary careers, serving healthy school meals, and rebuilding urban food systems through social enterprise.
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DC Central Kitchen

News for Donations

, April 8th, 2014

National Park Service Donates Venison

venison donation dcck story

Kenneth Ferebee (NPS) and Adrian Gory (DCCK) with the donation of venison.

Last week, the National Park Service donated 1,600 lbs of Venison to provide crucial protein for the 5,000 meals we distribute to local nonprofits every day. This is their second donation this year, totaling 3,300 lbs of venison.

We use the venison as we would any other meat protein that is either donated to or purchased  in recipes such as chili, bolognaise, meatloaf, or stew. The meals are distributed across the city by our own fleet of vehicles, and served with a starch and green vegetable.

The culled venison is a perfect way to efficiently use this great source of protein that would have otherwise gone to waste.

The relationship started with the Park Service reaching out to us about accepting the deer donation, they had heard that we worked with Farmers and Hunters Feeding the Hungry and knew we accepted venison.

A tremendous thanks to the National Park Service and Farmers and Hunters Feeding the Hungry for their donations that are feeding the soul of the city!

, April 7th, 2014

New Dehydrator Prevents Food Waste, Provides Healthy Snacks

Dehydrator Reduces Food Waste
Thanks to our friends at the CoStar Group, we now have a dehydrator at our Nutrition Lab that allows us to extend the life of fruit that would otherwise go to waste while creating new options for our line of Healthy Corners snacks.

Terence Hill, a graduate of our 93rd Culinary Job Training class, has been experimenting with dehydrating a variety of fruits including apples, bananas and pineapples that are approaching their sell by date. Produce items that may only have a couple good days left in their fresh state can last for months when properly dehydrated.

Healthy Corners will be incorporating these dried fruits into new varieties of trail mix, one of our most popular products, as well as selling them as stand-alone snacks. Terence is hard at work perfecting these new items, and they will roll out in our participating corner stores this summer.

Thanks to the CoStar Group for helping us bring these new products to our stores!

, December 12th, 2013

A Season of Giving: Thanking Our Holiday Food Donors

Volunteers from the Washington Jewish Community Center helped prepare hundreds of side dishes for our Thanksgiving meals.

Volunteers from the Washington DC Jewish Community Center helped prepare hundreds of side dishes for our Thanksgiving meals.

DC Central Kitchen is always bustling with volunteers to help make the 5,000 meals we produce every day for local nonprofits. But the holidays are a particularly hard time for those who don’t have access to wholesome meals to share with their families. This Thanksgiving, volunteers stepped up their game, and helped create two memorable events to support our work and combat hunger in their community.

FreshFarm Markets partnered with DC Central Kitchen to raise over $2,500 at the Dupont Circle Farmer’s Market, which we used to purchase fresh, healthy produce from local farmers and merchants to use for our holiday meals. We were also touched that our friend José Andrés pledged $1,000 to support the food drive. Juliet Glass, FreshFarm’s Director of Markets and Programs, reflected on how the event also benefits farmers and shoppers:

It’s really great for the farmers, especially with the unpredictable weather, and it supports them in these last days before winter. It also gives shoppers a way to give back that incorporates fresh food and gives others who don’t ordinarily have the means to go to the market the chance to enjoy fresh produce, too.
- Juliet Glass, FreshFarm Markets

The 13th Annual Everything But The Turkey Event with the Washington DC Jewish Community Center attracted over 500 volunteers of all ages to prepare 20,000 servings of food for those in need in the DC metropolitan area. The volunteers did an impressive job, efficiently peeling potatoes and zesting oranges with gusto, and assembled 356 pans of Thanksgiving side dishes such as coleslaw, stuffing, sweet potatoes, green beans, stuffing, and harvest bean salad in only a couple of hours.

Many thanks to our volunteers and food donors for their incredible support all year and especially in this season of giving to others.

Turkey Donations
Total Turkeys: 922

Performance Food Group (PFG)


Miller, Balis & O’Neil, PC

Cuisine Solution

Lockheed Martin

United Praise Youth Choir

UDC Law School

City Year DC


Amys, INC.

Boston Properties

M Powered Solutions

Vinson and Elk LLP

Cyber Data Tech

Sherrel Jennings

Mohammed Partovi

Capriotti Bread

Food and Turkey Drives

American Gas Association

Fresh Farm Markets

OSU v. Michigan Food Drive

Other Donations

Dr. Michael T. Gocke of Virginia Oral, Facial & Implant Surgery


Vinson and Elk LLP

Federal Schedulers

Federal Schedules, Inc.

Software AG USA

, July 18th, 2013

First Helping Beats The Heat


Earlier today: Tammy Parker beating the heat with help from First Helping

If you live here in Washington, DC or just watch the news, you know this week’s high heat and heavy humidity hasn’t been easy for anyone.

But for men, women, and families who are homeless and spend the daytime hours on the street when shelters are closed, this heat is more than uncomfortable – it’s downright dangerous.

Today, DC Central Kitchen outreach workers Jeff Rustin and James Weeks are out on the streets, providing care packages of food and water to stave off the sun. This isn’t the first time our staff have taken on tough weather to make a difference in people’s lives. Whether it’s back-to-back blizzards, powerful hurricanes, or brutal heat waves, DC Central Kitchen operates 365 days a year. 

When our community needs us most, DC Central Kitchen is open and on the front lines providing healthy meals and crucial programs that break the cycle of poverty. “Whatever we need they help us get it. You can’t find help like that anywhere else,” says Tammy Parker, a First Helping client, pictured in the photo above. Supporters like you empower our staff to act decisively when sudden changes affect our community. A local foundation has pledged to match all of today’s contributions to our First Helping Street Outreach program. If you want to help someone who’s living on the street and suffering in the heat, you can double your impact by making a gift today.

, June 14th, 2013

How We’re Engaging Local Businesses

We've partnered with 30 corner stores to deliver fresh fruits and veggies to DC neighborhoods without fully stocked grocery stores.

We’ve partnered with 30 corner stores to deliver fresh fruits and veggies to DC neighborhoods without fully stocked grocery stores.

We couldn’t do our work without our growing list of business partnerships. Here’s a recap of their amazing contributions.

Local Restaurants
Restaurants have always been an integral part of what we do. It all started in 1989 when our founder, Robert Egger, started recovering food from local restaurants, hotels, and catering operations to be used in meals to feed hungry district residents. Since then, restaurants have given us much more than leftovers. From participating in our events to providing internships and job opportunities for our culinary students, restaurants are the bread and butter of what makes DC Central Kitchen work.

Local Farmers
When we do have to buy food, we’re committed to buying local. In 2012, we invested $156,523 into our area economy by purchasing produce and meat from area farmers. We increased the total poundage of locally sourced food in our meals by 22% from 2011. Last year, 30% of all of the ingredients used in our school meals were locally sourced.

DC Corner Stores
We’re combating poor health and creating opportunities for small businesses through Healthy Corners, our wholesale delivery service that provides fresh fruits and veggies to communities without fully stocked supermarkets. In 2012, our 30 partner corner stores sold $33,000 worth of fresh produce.

Food Distributors
In 2012, our Nutrition Lab facility in Northeast DC facilitated the recovery of 320,000 pounds of fresh produce from local food distributors. These are good fruits and veggies that are fresh and healthy, but are not perfect enough for sale. Our relationships with these distributors have led them to increase their donations over the years, allowing us to make our donations go further.

Last year, we received over $432,949 dollars in workplace giving campaign contributions from employees working at local businesses and government agencies based in the region. We’re proud of their support and their efforts to get more involved in our work by volunteering and hosting group fundraisers.

DC Central Kitchen receives significant financial and in-kind support from local corporate partners. We’re proud to have many of our corporate partners listed as top corporate philanthropists by the Washington Business Journal, including Capital One, Clark Enterprises, Lockheed Martin, Marriott International, Kaiser Foundation Health Plan of the Mid-Atlantic States, Geppetto Catering, and many others.

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DC Central Kitchen

425 2nd St NW, Washington, DC 20001 (Near Union Station)
United Way# 8233, CFC# 67538
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