eTown eChievement Award - Maria Rose Belding of MEANS

40% of food produced in the United States goes to waste. Too often grocery stores and restaurants find themselves throwing out food when there is a significant need in their local communities.

MEANS was started with the belief it should be easy for those with excess food to share it with those in need. It didn’t take long to find people who agreed – everyone from Starbucks to The Washington Post. MEANS is now in 48 states and counting, helping divert food from the trash to local emergency feeding services with the ease and speed of the internet.

So far, over 2 million pounds of food has been donated through the MEANS system!

eTown eChievement Award - Maria Rose Belding of MEANS

Maria Rose Belding

As the author of more than a dozen nationally published pieces on food security and poverty, Maria Rose has also had the privilege to speak on the same issues in 25 states. Her work has not gone unnoticed, with recognition from Points of Light, L’Oreal Paris, and the Obama White House with President’s Volunteer Service awards in 2014 and 2016, along with being named a 2018 Glamour College Woman of the Year. In December 2018 at age 23, she became the youngest-ever female CNN Hero of the Year. Maria Rose graduated from American University in Washington, DC in May 2019, receiving a B.S. in public health while on the premed track.

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