Quantcast

Fremont teen mobilizes stuck-at-home students to bake over 10,000 desserts for people in need

Photo: Bake4Sake
By Laila Weir - Published on February 11, 2021.

A Fremont high school student hasn’t let COVID-19 shut down her efforts to do good. Instead, she has taken advantage of the opportunity to mobilize stuck-at-home teenagers around country to help people in need.

Vedika Jawa of Fremont had been baking desserts for local homeless shelters since she was 13 years old, when she founded a nonprofit organization called Bake4Sake.

When the pandemic hit, new regulations forced Jawa and her small team of bakers to switch gears. But far from letting that slow her down, the teen stepped on the gas and took her efforts national.

“Before the pandemic, Bake4Sake was just four young girls trying to bake for 60 residents at the local shelter,” Jawa, now 16, tells Hoodline. “Now Bake4Sake’s mission has spread across the country.”

Jawa tells Hoodline that the nonprofit has now expanded to 10 chapters in eight different states, where around 130 volunteers bake for 17 shelters. As of the start of 2021, Bake4Sake has delivered more than 10,000 desserts, she tells us.


Teens from around the U.S. taking have formed Bake4Sake chapters. | Photo: Bake4Sake

 

The project began in 2018, when Jawa decided to combine her love of baking with community service by making sweet treats for people in need. Initially, the local homeless shelters she contacted were skeptical, telling her she was too young to bake for them.

But when Jawa persisted — holding a bake sale and an ingredient drive to get her fledgling organization up and running, and then taking her case directly to the CEOs of the shelters — the shelters relented.

Then the pandemic hit, and new rules forced Bake4Sake to stop baking for the shelters they’d been working with. Undeterred, Jawa sought new partners. Soon, she connected with the South Hayward Parish food bank, arranging to deliver enough desserts for the approximately 300 families the bank served.

 
 
 
 
 
View this post on Instagram
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Bake4Sake (@bake4sake)

 

To find enough bakers to meet this increased demand, Jawa began posting on Instagram for local high school volunteers. The response surprised her.

“Instead of just getting responses from my classmates, I started to get responses from young teenagers in different states,” Jawa shares. Recognizing the opportunity, she created a presentation and toolkit to help interested teens from other areas set up local Bake4Sake chapters.

“I think during quarantine, a lot of people had more time and were baking, and Bake4Sake helped them put their baking to good use,” observes the high school junior.

At the same time that the pandemic created this increased opportunity to engage volunteers, it was fostering increased need as well, and Bake4Sake provided a way for Jawa to bring the two together.

“The pandemic has left even more people facing both food and housing insecurity,” Jawa says. “And although we know that we cannot provide them with houses, we hope to serve them these desserts in an effort to spread some love and show them that they are appreciated.”

To learn more or get involved, visit Bake4Sake.org.

Apr 30, 2021
San Jose

Pictures: Happy Hollow Park & Zoo in San Jose celebrates the birth of endangered lemur pups

San Jose's Happy Hollow Park & Zoo on Friday announced the birth of two critically endangered lemur pups. The adorable babies and their mama have an off-view den for quiet time out of the limelight, but visitors with a bit of luck may be able to spot them. Read More

Apr 29, 2021
San Jose

Baby whale caught in fishing line off South Bay coast, rescuers seek help

A baby whale tangled up in fishing line that was first spotted off the Southern California coast last week appears to be heading towards the Bay Area, and rescuers hope the public can help locate it. Read More

Apr 23, 2021
San Jose

New 99 Ranch store coming to San Jose’s Oakridge Mall with on-site dining

Fans of Asian cuisine rejoice! Taiwanese-American supermarket chain 99 Ranch Market is coming to the Westfield Oakridge Mall in San Jose, where word is it will serve up prepared foods for in-store dining and takeout alongside its popular selection of imported groceries and other products.  Read More

Apr 23, 2021
San Jose

Santa Clara VTA targeted in cyberattack

Riders of the Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority transit system are having to make do without real-time arrival information this week, as the agency has dealt with technology disruptions reportedly due to a cyberattack. Read More