SeaShare – a nonprofit organization devoted to partnering with the seafood industry to get seafood into various foodbanks – and the National Fisheries Institute’s (NFI) Future Leaders program is holding a national day of giving on 16 October.
SeaShare donates seafood through a national network of food banks, known as Feeding America, in order to provide thousands of people struggling with hunger with healthy proteins. Partners throughout the seafood industry provide funding and seafood to give nutritious meals to some of the 41 million Americans that struggle with hunger.
Each year, the nonprofit aims to donate at least 2 million pounds of seafood to 20 to 30 states – the equivalent of 8 million servings of seafood. So far, over 220 million servings of seafood have been donated through the program.
“SeaShare is excited to be working with the National Fisheries Institute’s Future Leaders to bring more seafood to food banks across the country,” Kate Tomkins, director of development for SeaShare, said. “We are celebrating this partnership with a national day of giving on October 16th to inspire others in the seafood industry to give back. SeaShare is the only nonprofit that is dedicated to fighting hunger with nutritious seafood, and our goal is to send 8,000,000 servings of seafood to food banks this year.”
At its conception in 1994, SeaShare was a small program that took what would have been discarded bycatch and donated it to food banks. It was started by a small group of commercial fishermen in Alaska, who were at the time required by law to throw away any bycatch. Through legislative changes and a great deal of effort, SeaShare was born and since then it has continued to provide seafood to food banks across the country.
Since those small beginnings, the nonprofit has grown substantially. SeaShare now sources most of its seafood from first-run, marketable product donated by fishermen and processors across the U.S.
Despite the growth, the company has stuck to its core value of providing food for hungry families. SeaShare has just three employees, and 94 percent of each dollar received goes to the donation programs. For every USD 1 (EUR .90) donated SeaShare is able to provide 8 servings of seafood.
This year, the 2019 class of NFI’s Future Leaders program – which brings together individuals from seafood companies and affiliated organizations from across the United States to learn more about the industry – is working with SeaShare to bring in more donations as the holiday season approaches. The class set a goal of providing 20,000 pounds of seafood and USD 20,000 (EUR 18,152) to the program on the 16 October day of giving to help feed thousands of people .
So far, a number of companies that had employees participate in the Future Leaders program have already either donated, whether it be seafood, money, or awareness. Companies such as Trident, Bay Hill, Rich Products, UniSea, and more have all agreed to donate either seafood or money to the cause. In addition, companies that didn’t even have participants in the Future Leaders program have agreed to donate, inspired by the day of giving.
SeaShare is accepting donations during the day of giving on its website, in the hopes of reaching the 20,000 pound, USD 20,000 (EUR 18,152) goal.