412 Food Rescue is launching Community Takeout, which will provide funds to local restaurants to prepare 1,500 meals per week to help people who are facing hunger. Inspired by Double Play, a program independently launched by Dr. Mark Baratz, a longtime 412 Food Rescue supporter, Community Takeout aims to scale up the impact of his project.

It will start with five restaurants, all locally owned: Arnold’s Tea, Bae Bae’s Kitchen, Khalil’s Restaurant, DiAnoia’s Eatery and The Warren. For every $10 donated, $6 is paid directly to the restaurant, with $2 covering logistics and transport coordination and $2 donated to the Greater Pittsburgh Restaurant Workers Mutual Aid fund.

After each day’s meals are prepared, 412 Food Rescue volunteers will pick up the food and make no-contact deliveries to its nonprofit partners — in some cases, directly to food-insecure people who are homebound.

“Access to food is a human right,” says chef Claudy Pierre of Arnold’s Tea. “It is our honor to be able to partner with 412 Food Rescue and feed more families. More hands make for a lighter load, and we’re carrying this load with our brothers and sisters in food service.”

Each participating restaurant will receive $18,000 over the course of 10 weeks. Takeout containers are being donated by US Food and Sysco.

“We knew that there had to be a way to tie this problem together with the food insecurity that is hitting unprecedented levels,” says Christine Grady, formerly of Rivendale Farms and Union Standard, who is volunteering to get the program launched. “This program allows 412 Food Rescue to safely provide meals to those in need and to support restaurants, not just by providing them business, but by helping them do what they do best: feed people.”

Anyone interested in supporting the Community Takeout program can do so here.

Michael Machosky is a writer and journalist with 18 years of experience writing about everything from development news, food and film to art, travel, books and music. He lives in Greenfield with his wife, Shaunna, and 10-year old son.