Our Mission

The mission of Peninsula Food Runners is to alleviate hunger and minimize food waste in the San Francisco Bay Area. Everyday, Peninsula Food Runners relays a wide variety of wonderfully prepared foods to community feeding organizations in both San Mateo and Santa Clara Counties.

Peninsula Food Runners is a non-profit 501.c3 organization. All food and financial donations are tax deductible.


In Malaysia, where I lived until age 14, my mother worked as a government social worker. I often tagged along with my mother when she made her case calls. Many of the victims were of unfortunate circumstances, such as fires, monsoon flooding, homelessness, drug abuse, domestic child abuse, etc. Of all the circumstances, one issue most consistent was the lack of food.

In 2007, while I was a student at Tante Marie’s Culinary School, I met Mary Risely, the founder of the school. Mary also happened to be the founder of the San Francisco Food Runners. I was inspired by her story to why she began Food Runners. After graduating from Tante Marie’s, I became a full-time professional chef. I also became a volunteer of Food Runners and have been since 2008.

To hear one’s story can be inspiring but to actually walk in one’s shoes can be transforming. It was only when I became a volunteer, I understood the mission of Food Runners which is to relay food to the needy. You meet people from all walks of life and everyone has a story. Sometimes, the stories are similar to even those of your own. Volunteering has made me realize how fortunate we are.

And because of my childhood experience as well as the experience as a volunteer with Food Runners, I see a great need to continue and expand Mary’s vision of Food Runners. Hence, the Peninsula Food Runners was born. Peninsula Food Runners relays food to the needy by means minimizing food waste in our society. Peninsula Food Runners relies on the goodwill of its Volunteers and Donors. Thanks to Mary, and all of our donors and volunteers for making Peninsula Food Runners a success.

Maria Yap
Founder, Peninsula Food Runners