Become a Recipient

BFR provides food to charitable nonprofit organizations that comport with section 501(c)3 of the internal revenue code. We prioritize donations of food to organizations that benefit individuals who would otherwise not have access to healthy food before donating to organizations not perfectly aligned with this mission.

To apply to be a recipient, please submit the following information by email to [email protected].

  • Nonprofit Name
  • Individual Contact Name
  • Mission of Organization
  • How will you use the food?
  • What will you do with the food you cannot use?
  • How do you build community around food?
  • Do you provide educational opportunities for others?
  • Do you have an individual connected with your organization who will volunteer for BFR in order to pick up the food you receive (by bicycle)?

This is how we decide who receives food:


Category A: Grocery Programs: These nonprofits house free grocery programs coordinated by and benefiting people who experience food insecurity and food access barriers. BFR aims to reduce access barriers for these recipients by bringing food to the places they are already going to be. 

Category B: Organizations that Benefit Food Insecure Populations: These nonprofits benefit food insecure populations and potentially have access to healthy food, but at a higher cost to the nonprofit, and thus a potential compromise in food choices may exist. BFR seeks to reduce food budgets of these nonprofits while simultaneously increasing healthy food options.

Category C: Just-in-Time Recipients: These nonprofits may or may not benefit people experiencing food insecurity but can take food when other organizations are unable to receive it due to quantity, time, day, and other logistical barriers. There may be other reasons for donating to them outside of addressing food insecurity, such as community building, education, or outreach.

Spontaneous Drops/Special Events: BFR staff may decide to re-route a shift for a special circumstance, such as an event for a community partner. These recipients may be asked by BFR staff to perform their own pick-ups, and thus volunteer themselves for the organization. We prioritize donating to organizations that work on education or political advocacy specifically around environmental or social justice work. We also prioritize smaller community-based organizations who can also commit to helping with picking the food up.  

If you would like to receive food for a special event, please give us no less than 1 weeks notice and email BFR’s Volunteer Coordinator at [email protected]

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Recipient Testimonials:

The Boulder Shelter for the Homeless serves over 300 meals a day during the winter season. Boulder Food Rescue has made it possible to offer healthy and fresh food for our clients. Additionally, Boulder Food Rescue serves as an invaluable liaison, strengthening the relationship between the Homeless Shelter and the community that supports our services.

–Sarah Haas, Kitchen Manager, Boulder Shelter for the Homeless

When BFR showed up, unannounced and unplanned for, at the 1st Pres Thanksgiving outreach meal last November, the man in charge thought they were, literally, angels. He had just realized they had bought nowhere near enough salad materials to feed the expected crowd of homeless and marginalized people. Suddenly, in came a couple of folks carrying enormous amounts of lettuce and other produce! They handed it over and left, while the cooks praised the Lord! We too, at our Lamb’s Ministry Saturday meals for Boulder’s homeless population, feel that the fresh produce is a gift from God. Thank you all so much for supporting our ministry!

–Elsi Dodge, Lamb’s Lunch at First Presbyterian Church

 Thistle is a small, mission-driven non-profit that’s dedicated to planning, development and management of affordable housing. We ensure that working families, disabled and elderly residents in Boulder County are able to live and work where they want.

Thistle now has Boulder Food Rescue distributions at two of our 11 Boulder rental properties, one Community Land Trust site, and we continue to add more. Our participating residents have been so appreciative to have fresh and packaged food delivered every week. It has been an immense help to folks who are trying to get by on a tight budget. It also pulls neighbors together to connect in a positive way.

Being involved with Boulder Food Rescue brings warm fuzzy feelings to everyone it touches. It’s a total win-win situation – the food doesn’t get wasted and it gets to those who really need it. Thank you Boulder Food Rescue for your amazing program, staff, and devoted volunteers! We also thank the stores who help make a difference in the lives of very grateful people every day.

-Marni J. Tharler, Community Relations Manager, Thistle Affordable Housing, Boulder

Everyone at High Mar was thrilled with the beautiful fresh produce and breads Nina brought to us today.  It was a roaring success!  People were so surprised and thankful for all of your help.  Even though the word hasn’t reached everyone yet, most of the food was gone within about 2 hours.  The room was a buzz with enthusiasm!  We especially loved all of the fresh veggies and fruit because quite a few of us follow a plant-based diet.There’s another wonderful outcome of your food program.  Three people suggested we make the Sunday morning Boulder Food Rescue donation a social event with coffee and tea.  The reason this is so special is that it gives us another community-building activity.  Having free food available here also draws out the shier, more isolated members of our little community, and gives them a chance to connect with their neighbors.Thank you so much for all of the beautiful, generous work you’re doing.

-Resident at low-income senior home