2020 was an unpredictable and difficult year for everyone. Here in Bali the overnight disappearance of the Tourism industry caused severe economic instability and has left tens of thousands of people in vulnerable and dire situations.
As a Food Rescue Foundation our main source of aid came in the form of Surplus Food which we acquired from our many partner Hotels, Restaurants, and Suppliers. However, since the Pandemic the amount of Surplus Food we are able to collect and redistribute has declined significantly. Meaning that SOS was left in a position where we had less food to give to all the people and orphanages that rely on our support and the number of people who needed help was increasing exponentially.
Yet, this period of drought inspired many new programs and projects to life, all of which have allowed us to effectively distribute more nutritional meals than ever before to those in need. Distributing over 1.5 million meals to as many people in need as possible in 2020 as part of our short-term COVID-19 relief efforts. Something we wouldn’t have been able to do without the incredible support from our Partners, Donors, Followers, Volunteers, and of course the SOS team.
Now it’s 2021 and we’ve started the year off strong having distributed over 100,000 meals per month so far but this year we’re honing in our focus and resources in order to impact specific communities in a significant way. Instead of distributing as many meals to as many people as possible, we want to help uplift struggling communities by providing regular support predominantly in the form of food but also helping them with water, education, and other means for an allocated duration of time with the goal being long term independence and stability.
PROGRAMS & PROJECTS
Our fundamental operation remains Food Rescue. Every day our team of trained staff uses refrigerated trucks to collect surplus food from our partnered Hotels, Restaurants, Suppliers, Manufacturers, and Individuals.
SOS prioritises food safety, in order to assure this all the food collected by our “Food Ambassadors” is first brought to our office where our Food Safety Specialists inspect it before it gets redistributed to the orphanages and communities they support.
Although 2020 saw a decline in food coming in from Hotels and Restaurants, we received tons (literal tons!) of surplus food products from large suppliers such as Nestle, Arnott’s & Orang Tua. As well as fresh produce from local markets and suppliers such as Blu Farm and Bukit Mesari Farms.
FOOD RESCUE KITCHENS
In order to compensate for the lack of food coming in from their usual sources and to provide as many nutritional meals as possible, SOS started the SOS Food Rescue Kitchens on June 17th 2020.
SOS currently haS 3 locations across Bali which are operational six days a week, with plans to set up even more in order to be able to impact communities and people around the island. SOS Chefs along with a team of Volunteers make over 2500 meals a day which are distributed all over Bali.
The meals get brought directly to the people who need it most, this way it becomes more than just a warm healthy meal but it shows people that they are not alone. The whole initiative is rewarding for all those involved and it’s heartwarming to see the support we have been receiving
Their main rescue kitchen in Sanur is now focusing on Food Repurposing. This is where food donated such as “Sushi” is turned into Sushi or Seafood Fried rice. Something more familiar and welcoming to recipients.
This is done with all the foodstuffs they get donated that would otherwise not be eaten. Stale bread becomes a delicious bread pudding. Old veggies become a nutritious vegetable stir fry. Keeping SOS chefs on their toes and thinking creatively.
COOK FOR SOS & CHARITY COOK-OFF
SOS have initiated the Cook for SOS and Charity Cook-Off Programs. This is where the partnered Hotels, Restaurants, and Individuals use their own resources and time to prepare home-cooked meals. Meals which SOS then collects and efficiently redistributes to the neediest people of the communities. The number of partners for these programs is increasing and SOS is very excited to see all the wonderful food being made.
COMMUNITY FRIDGES & DONATION BOXES
To give people the option to donate foodstuffs conveniently, SOS has set up multiple Community Fridges and Food Donation Boxes at strategic locations around Bali.
This way anyone who wants to donate doesn’t have to go to one of their “main” locations and instead can drop off anything of their choosing into one of the Fridges or Boxes. These have been a consistent source of food donations since their set up.
SOS SUSTAINABLE GARDEN
To “Food cycle”, they have launched the SOS Sustainable Garden one of the goals for this garden is to produce delicious, nutritious, and organically grown vegetables which they will use in their rescue kitchens.
The other Goal would be to encourage, educate and guide those who are willing to learn about how to start their own sustainable and organic community gardens. The idea being that if they can replicate the success at SOS’s own garden in villages across Bali, they can cultivate their own vegetables and provide both nutritional and economic support for their communities during these difficult times.
SOS Team along with Volunteers have already been toiling away intensely. Digging, ploughing, and hoeing away and they already have exciting results.
SCHOOL FOOD DRIVE
Getting the communities in Bali to support what SOS does is a vital part of growth. One of their latest programs that gets the communities involved is their School Food Drive Program.
This is when SOS encourages the kids and their parents from International Schools to organize a food drive with support and incentives provided by SOS.
It’s a simple and fun way for students of any age to give back to the people in Bali. Whilst learning about food insecurity and developing a multitude of skills through running their personal food drives.