Lasagna Love Brings People Kindness & Compassion in a Pan

Lasagna Love, a movement started by Rhiannon Menn in San Diego, now provides delicious assistance to those in need in all 50 states.

A pan of tasty comfort food provides exactly that: comfort. Just ask Rhiannon Menn, founder of Lasagna Love, a national movement brimming with baked-in kindness. Like so many moms, Rhiannon was nearly overwhelmed when the COVID-19 pandemic took hold. As cities locked down, people lost their jobs, schools went virtual and volunteer opportunities became limited. She decided she had to do something to help ease the stress of family and friends.

Beginning a Big-Batch Movement

Copy Of Lasagna Lovecourtesy Rhiannon Menn

Rhiannon loves to cook and was looking for a way to bring joy to herself and others. She says it’s just as easy to make several lasagnas as it is to make one, so she posted a notice on social media saying she and her daughter were making extra meals if anyone was in need of one. The Menns made and delivered seven lasagna meals all over San Diego that first week.

Rhiannon called her new mission Lasagna Love. Her social media friends began asking how they could help, and the idea took flight.

Lasagna Love Goes Nationwide

By the end of the first year, Lasagna Love was delivering about 2,000 homemade meals per week all over America. Now, about 20,000 home cooks are participating in this organization, with local Lasagna Love group leaders spread throughout the country. (Get inspired with our 10 best lasagna recipes!)

Cooks may make meals every week, once a month or on whatever schedule works for them. In some cities, recipients are found through foster care agencies or housing project managers, but there are no preconditions to be one of the families on the receiving end.

Well Worth the Work

“I just feel so inspired by the number of people who have gotten involved. It’s more than just a food delivery service; it’s become a movement around kindness, without judgment and without reservation,” says Rhiannon. “If you need help, we’re here for you.”

For Rhiannon, the thank-yous are more than worth the effort. One woman told her that she had been worrying about how she was going to feed her children that night, and the lasagna would feed them for a few days. Although Lasagna Love started during the pandemic, Rhiannon says it will continue as long as comfort and care are needed.

To learn how you can help or be helped, visit lasagnalove.org.

COVID-19 & Food Insecurity Facts

  • The pandemic has created an increase in hunger across the country.
  • Feeding America has distributed 5.8 billion meals during the pandemic.
  • Early in the pandemic, 4 in 10 people seeking charitable food assistance were doing so for the first time.
  • In 2021, 42 million people may experience food insecurity.
  • 1 in 6 children could face hunger in 2021.

Food banks are doing what they can to fight hunger in the face of the pandemic, but they need help. Want to know what you can do? Visit feedingamerica.org/covid19 to learn more about Feeding America’s pandemic response, and find a food bank near you.

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