project leader
Lynne S
219 Loyola Avenue
(Broadmoor, Bywater, Mid-City, Uptown, Seventh Ward and more)
latest update rss
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the project

Our mission is to empower local residents to take collective action on the issue of food waste.

Compost NOW (New Orleans Waste) began with a simple idea: provide free, weekly food waste drop-off sites for those interested in keeping their food waste from the landfill but who didn't have the time, interest or space to compost in their backyard. We then partner with local farms who do the rest!

In 2017, Compost NOW began at two New Orleans Public Library sites, one day a week. By 2020, we expanded to nearly 50 collections each month! From January through March of this year, we were at ten library sites, six days a week, plus we partnered with Tulane Law School to host a site as well. 

During COVID-19 we are still open and collecting food scraps every day, on both the East Bank and the West Bank of New Orleans. We have had to reduce our number of sites (both NOPL and Tulane are closed) but now have 16 collections each week, most with expanded hours, in an attempt to make it easier for participants to combine with an essential trip to the supermarket, pharmacy or hardware store.

Event details are on and we update our page daily.

Collectively, we have diverted over 300,000 pounds of food waste waste from the landfill so far. We have also hosted two compost conferences, featuring dozens of local organizations and individuals who are committed to food security, local farmings, recycling, composting and healthy soils.

We have dozens of volunteers who host the collections, to answer questions and ensure the bins are not contaminated. We have partnered with over half a dozen local farms who turn the scraps into nutrient-rich compost or feed their farm animals.

We provide this free service to hundreds of families each week and are truly building a community of composters in New Orleans. We would like to see the City of New Orleans expand their 

the steps

We had an emergency shortfall of $1700 at the end of 2019 when one of our funders was unable to contribute the funds we had expected from them. Using this  crowdsourcing platform, we raised those funds: thank you to all who donated! The additional money raised earlier this year (through March 15th) went to purchasing new bins for our site in Lakeview, and buying additional sites that expanded in popularity and needed greater capacity. That is why there is already over $1950 raised on this site.

We are now raising money to keep the program going through the end of May, and hopefully beyond.

The New Orleans Public Library and Tulane Law School are no longer hosting our collections, due to their closure during the stay-at-home policy, so we are having to pay for some of the transporation fees that they were previously helping to cover. 

In order to remain open for all of 2020 -- we are only committed through to May 15th at this point -- we also need to raise money to hire a part-time coordinator who will ensure the program keeps operating smoothly once the founder, Lynne Serpe, goes out of town for several months starting in June.

If we are able to raise at least $3800 by May 1st, then we will post a  job description with a goal of hiring someone by end-of-May.

why we're doing it

The City of New Orleans does not offer curbside municipal composting. When we began Compost NOW, they did not even offer any drop-off locations for local residents. They finally offered a once-a-month option after we had been opertaing for about 16 months. They have since expanded to twice-a-month, on the Second and Fourth Saturdays, at a single location.

In comparison, Compost NOW was hosting nearly 50 drop offs every month (even more during the COVID-19 stay-at-home mandate). We were in eleven different neighborhoods, six days a week and we hoped to add even more neighborhoods.

Asking people to bring their food scraps from their home to another location is a lot -- we try to make it as easy and convenient as possible by being in so many different parts of the city, on different days and times. Even now, we are in four different neighborhoods, on both the East Bank and the West Bank.

And our drop offs are always free! 

We partnered with the New Orleans Public Library because they are a trusted public space, open to all, across all socio-economic lines. Tulane Law School added a drop-off site after we presented to their students. 

Moving forward, we are hoping to partner with other organizations who share our commitment to environmental stewardship. 


Disbursement budget:

Staffing: $500 per month of June 

Transportation: $200 per month (times 6 = 1200)

Bins: $420

Subtotal: $2120

TOTAL RAISED = $2,340.00
ioby Platform Fee $35.00
ioby Fiscal Sponsorship Fee (5%) $115.25
ioby Donation Processing Fee (3%) $69.15

To include ioby fiscal sponsor service fees:REVISED BUDGET (3/24/20)

ioby Platform Fee $35
ioby Fiscal Sponsorship Fee (5%) $192
ioby Donation Processing Fee (3%) $115

First Two Quarters 2020:

Staffing: $300 per month (times 6 = $1800)

Transportation: $200 per month (times 6 = 1200)

Bins: $500

ioby Platform Fee $35
ioby Donation Processing Fee (3%) $109


Sorry, but this project doesn't have any updates yet.


This is where photos will go once we build flickr integration


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