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Posted in Foresters Member Benefits, Your Money | September 2016

Help feed your community

help-feed-your-community

Food insecurity is a very real problem for millions of people. In fact, 46 million people in the US1, over 10 million in Canada2, and more than half of Britons rely on food banks to keep their families fed.3

Those shocking numbers are the reason Hunger Action Month exists. An American initiative, the movement asks everyone to consider doing whatever they can to provide resources to their local food banks in order to fight hunger in their communities during the month of September. That may be financial support, donations of food, volunteering your time to help sort donations, or even advocating and raising awareness.

You can make a real difference in the lives of people right in your very own community. Contact your local food bank to find out what their greatest need is, then get the whole family involved and see what you can do to fight hunger together.

How you can make a difference

  1. Save your pennies. For the whole month of September, put your pocket change, any coins you find on the street, or the change from any purchases you make in a jar each day. At the end of the month donate your collection to your local food bank.
  2. Share your harvest. If you have a vegetable garden and you’re finding it difficult to use up everything you’re harvesting, consider donating the leftover bounty. Fresh produce is something food bank users appreciate very much.
  3. Donate your lunch money. If you often buy your lunch rather than bringing one from home, consider brown bagging it during September and donating the money you would have spent on a lunch to your local food bank.
  4. Focus on what’s needed. Sometimes we sweep through our own pantries and clear out old items or things we think we won’t use and donate them to food banks. While any donation is great, focus on the items that are truly needed:
    1. Pasta (canned or dry) and pasta sauces
    2. Canned and frozen meats and fish
    3. Meat alternatives like peanut butter, soy and nuts
    4. Canned goods like beans, soups and stews
    5. Dairy including fresh canned and powdered milk
    6. Canned vegetables and fruit
    7. Whole grain cereals
    8. Infant foods and baby formula
    9. Bathroom tissue and diapers
    10. Personal hygiene products

Contact your local food bank to find out what their specific needs are, or use this list as a guideline.

  1. Let Foresters FinancialTM help you organize a food drive in your community. You can certainly go it alone by finding planning resources online, but remember that as a Foresters member you have access to Foresters Community Grants, a unique member benefit that enables members to apply online, for grants of up to $2,500, to organize and lead a volunteer activity that’s meaningful to them and to their own community. Imagine the impact you could make if you teamed up with Foresters and eager family and friends to put together care packages of food and other necessary supplies for your local food bank. Visit MyForesters.com for more information and to find out how to get started.

No one should ever have to go to bed hungry or worry about how they’re going to put food on the table. It’s important to support food banks all year long, but making a special effort in September during Hunger Action Month is a wonderful way to support your community by helping to make it stronger and healthier.

 

SOURCES

  1. http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2014/08/17/hunger-study-food/14195585/
  2. https://www.foodbankscanada.ca/Learn-About-Hunger/About-Hunger-in-Canada.aspx
  3. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/hungry-britain-welfare-cuts-leave-more-than-500000-people-forced-to-use-food-banks-warns-oxfam-8636743.html

 

414095D CAN/US (09/16)

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