HOW IT ALL BEGAN
Founded in 2011, Pesia’s Kitchen was inspired by Safta (Grandma) Pesia who fed poor people in her small hometown of Volozhyn, Poland. While Pesia did not have much, she felt strongly that it was a basic human right that nobody should go hungry.
In Israel, 630,000 households experience food insecurity, including approximately 800,000 children. Yet 2.5m tons of food is wasted each year. In response Pesia’s grandchildren, Gideon and Pnina set up Pesia’s Kitchen.
Pesia’s Kitchen rescues produce from restaurants, corporate catering units and supermarkets. Vast amounts of vegetables, bread and other items are delivered to Pesia’s Kitchen in Tel Aviv and Holon. In turn, these raw ingredients are distributed to shelters, old age homes and other small institutions that supply food as part of their service to some of the most vulnerable people in Israel.
Some of the ingredients are turned into nourishing soup and distributed directly to people need – often as the only hot meal they have. The prepared food is collected from Pesia’s Kitchen by volunteers who in turn distribute it to the recipients.
Over 1m meals are distributed every year.
Zahava escaped for safety with her young children Lily and Dina during the height of a horrendous and cruel civil war in her birth country. She and her children have suffered enormously for many years and are now permanent residents in South Tel-Aviv. Zahava became involved with a man who turned out to be abusive to her and her children and they were evacuated to safety at a battered women's shelter but have had periods of homelessness and have suffered from malnutrition.
Pesia’s Kitchen met the family during one of their stays in a women’s shelter. They are regularly in touch with Zahava and follow the progress of her children.
Zahava recently had an accident preventing her from working for several months which added tremendous stress to the family.
Now, together with the support from Pesia’s Kitchen and various other charities, they are safe and living in a decent, small apartment.
Zahava describes the team at Pesia's Kitchen as their home and family in Israel. She is grateful not only for them feeding her family but for all the support and love they have shown her.