Run for a Reason: Melinda's Story

by Jordan Olander

Melinda Angeles started volunteering for 412 Food Rescue after learning about it through the Sustainability Green Team of Allegheny County. It was the perfect volunteer opportunity for Melinda; she loves to help others and hates when things are wasted. 

When volunteering, Melinda goes to cafes and restaurants to pick up leftover food and then personally delivers the leftovers to organizations that feed people in need. After delivering the food, she would frequently receive hugs and appreciation from the people she helped. Melinda gained many heartwarming experiences by meeting and talking to people that she wouldn’t have met without volunteering with 412 Food Rescue. But don’t take our word for it. Check out this video to learn more about Melinda’s inspiring volunteer experience.

Still, Melinda thought she could do even more for 412 Food Rescue. And that’s where the DICK’S Sporting Goods Pittsburgh Marathon’s Run for a Reason Charity Program presented by Bank of America comes in.

After previously running a half-marathon, Melinda and her sister initially decided to run the UPMC Health Plan Pittsburgh Half Marathon as a bonding experience. While signing up, however, Melinda saw that she could Run for 412 Food Rescue and jumped at the opportunity to do something she loved for an organization she loves. According to Melinda:

“It was an opportunity for free registration to an event that would provide an incentive to work out and hours of exclusive bonding time with my sister in our hometown – so I didn't have to buy plane tickets – while also supporting an organization that means a lot to me!”

While training with her sister was her favorite part of last year’s race, Melinda was also excited with how lively Pittsburgh was on race day. As she ran, Melinda received high-fives and heard cheers from 412 Food Rescue workers and supporters, as well as some old friends. She proudly wore her 412 Food Rescue shirt and was recognized by the 412 Food Rescue cheer group as the “girl who delivers bagels to them every Friday.” The outpouring of love and support from fellow racers to spectators was electric and made her experience even better.

When asked why others should run for 412 Food Rescue in the upcoming year, Melinda shared countless reasons. Most importantly was her sense of accomplishment —not only that she completed another half-marathon, but that she got to raise money and awareness for her favorite charity. Running with her sister while being cheered on by thousands of people in the energy filled streets of Pittsburgh was a bonus that made the day one to remember. 

Thanks to the DICK’S Sporting Goods Pittsburgh Marathon’s Run for a Reason Charity Program presented by Bank of America, Melinda was able to combine her love of running and passion for helping others for an unforgettable experience that surely made a lasting impact.

For more information about the program or to register as a charity runner, visit:

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