In Oklahoma City, the food truck craze just got a little more altruistic.
Made Possible By Us
The problem with traditional food banks is that people with limited mobility are often the most in need of healthy and accessible meals. In Oklahoma City, where the local community group Made Possible By Us does its work, a social media campaign launched in early 2015 found that this a serious city concern: Out of 1,000 respondents, most said they were worried about neighbors’ hunger. That’s why the group is taking their food bank on the road.
The group’s soon-to-be-launched Food for All truck is set to serve up monthly meals to needy kids attending after-school programs. "We wanted to address both food availability and nutrition," Made Possible By Us co-founder Mike Zserdin told Fast Company. "So instead of just delivering macaroni and cheese and dry goods, we're delivering fresh cooked food. [After-school programs] also get nutritional education, because it's odd that food insecurity and obesity seem to kind of go hand in hand in the U.S."
But the business model is a little more complicated than that. Made Possible by Us has partnered with Whole Foods and an Oklahoma restaurant group called A Good Egg to also serve as a more conventional food truck, manned by a rotating cast of local chefs and cooks. When Oklahomans purchase a sandwich, soup, or burger from the truck—the menu will depend on which local is cooking on board—every dollar raised will provide five meals for the community’s needy.
via Flickr user Wesley Fryer
Other Oklahoma volunteers have stepped up to help with the food truck, including the First National Bank of Oklahoma and the local food truck software company TruckIt OKC. Still, the project needs donations to get started—currently, the group is about two-thirds of the way toward its fundraising goal.
"We wanted to start out with this idea of how do we solve our community's problems in the context of community," Zserdin said. "How do we create a social action community that goes about the business of intentionally looking at problems and opportunities in our community?"