Posts Tagged ‘Feeding America’

September=Hunger Action Month

This month is Hunger Action Month, a chance for all of us to focus on those around the world, and, sadly, those next door, who don’t have enough to eat. Feeding America is the driving force behind the month of awareness and action, and the theme website has great ideas for individuals, families, and kids to get involved by volunteering and advocating for the hungry. 30 Ways in 30 Days has a new suggestion for each calendar day of the month to be part of the answer. (For example, today it suggests changing your facebook status to reflect Hunger Action Month. Next Tuesday, join the Huddle to Fight Hunger and Kraft Foods will donate a dollar to the cause. Other corporate sponsors also help extend your reach.

There is a simple search engine so you can find the food bank closest to you, where you can volunteer any time of year with achievable tasks for the whole family, like packing meals, driving delivery vans, shelving donated items, helping cook in the kitchens, and more. The face of hunger is not only the homeless woman outside your office. It is many many kids in school who only get one solid meal a day that is provided in the cafeteria. It is the single parent not quite able to make ends meet. It might easily be your neighbor or friend or even you. Food banks in even the wealthiest communities across the country have had the requests double over the past two years in today’s still floundering economy. People who never thought they’d need help have had to reach out. Hunger is a thing people hide if they can, so meet them more than halfway by driving the conversation, and action, to make going to bed hungry a thing of the past.

Hungry

I’m a little peckish today. No big deal, I just skipped lunch. I’ve never truly known hunger, never had a legitimately empty belly. Sure, I groused as a teenager in the summertime, moaning “I’m hunnnnngggggrrrryyyyyyyy” as if I was the most put-upon soul in the world…but so many are truly hungry. Starving. Malnourished. Dying of hunger.

There are so many ways of addressing hunger, and so many efforts we can support. It can get overwhelming. It ought to be overwhelming–the problem is like that. A thing I love is when organizations and corporations make everyday habits into opportunities for us to give. Something you might do anyway that will, with very little extra effort from you, make a difference. In light of global hunger, this may seem paltry, but it truly isn’t. Mother Teresa said if you can’t feed 100 people, feed one…

Snickers has one of those no skin off my nose programs where we can help, almost effortlessly. Their new “BAR HUNGER: It Tastes Good to Do Good” program has newly printed candy bar wrappers. Inside the wrapper is a code. Once you’ve eaten your sweet snack, you enter that code on their website, and they donate a meal to someone in need. Up to 3.5 million meals are going to be donated while the program lasts (through the end of November). Their partner is Feeding America (they used to be known as “America’s Second Harvest”) and their efforts already make a huge difference in this nation’s childhood nutrition and hungry populations.

SO a candy bar may not be the best thing for you, but it can do something extra for someone who genuinely needs help. Then pop over to the Feeding America Hunger Action Center to find more ways to help.

Feed Your Spirit

Yesterday was the 70th anniversary of the release of Gone With the Wind. One of Scarlett O’Hara’s more famous quotes, among many, is “As God is my witness, I’ll never be hungry again.”

So what the hell is up with us that we can’t manage to make a proclamation like that for the world? How can we be rounding out the first decade of the 21st century, and people are dying every day from hunger and malnutrition? It isn’t because of actual lack of food—there is enough nutritious food on this planet for every mouth. Some of it may not be conveniently located, but for as much as UPS, FedEx, and the postal service are logging road and air miles and shipping knots, we could  get massive amounts of food to the hungry as easily as we get Wii to the nephews and smelly Yankee Candles to Grandma.

Think about showing some generosity to these or any of the many other charities committed to feeding the hungry. Your support is needed year ’round, but this time of year, especially, it is an awfully good fit to reach out and share the generosity of spirit that is filling the air.

Action Against Hunger-USA (http://www.actionagainsthunger.org/)

Bread for the World (http://www.bread.org/)

Child Fund International (http://www.childfund.org/)

Feeding America (formerly America’s Second Harvest. http://feedingamerica.org/default.aspx?show_shov=1/)

Food for the Hungry (http://www.fh.org/)

Freedom from Hunger (http://www.freedomfromhunger.org/)

The Hunger Project (http://www.thp.org/)

The Hunger Site (http://www.thehungersite.com/clickToGive/home.faces?siteId=1)

UNICEF: Fight Hunger (http://www.unicefusa.org/work/nutrition/?gclid=CLLKuNaS254CFaM45Qod5m49Jw)

World Vision End Hunger (http://www.worldvision.org)

This doesn’t even begin to scratch the surface of possibilities to give. Find one near or far from your home or wherever you’ll spend the holidays. It’s hard, at this time of year, to think of anyone going to bed hungry, sick, and possibly not making it to morning due to lack of food. It should be hard to think about—it is unacceptable.

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