This November, Feeding America, the nation's leading domestic hunger relief organization, calls attention to the problem of child hunger in the United States and promotes its BackPack Program, which puts food directly in the hands of children in need."Pack 'til They're Back!" will raise awareness of both child hunger and the BackPack Program throughout November while ensuring that kids at risk of hunger have the food they need over the long Thanksgiving weekend. While the BackPack Program operates every weekend and during school vacations, Thanksgiving is an especially important time for children and families to have enough to eat as families across the nation come together to give thanks.
"The insidious effects of hunger expand well beyond the child who struggles daily for his or her next nutritious meal. Hunger significantly impacts how kids grow and learn," said Vicki Escarra, President and CEO of Feeding America."Feeding America encourages everyone to play a role throughout November and beyond in raising awareness around the issue of child hunger and get involved in your community."
Since 2006, Feeding America's BackPack Program has grown to include more than 150 Feeding America food banks serving more than 230,000 children each year at nearly 5,000 BackPack sites across the United States. Much of the growth in the program comes thanks to support from Feeding America Mission Partner C&S Wholesale Grocers of Keene, New Hampshire. C&S has invested more than $1 million in Feeding America to support national efforts to fight child hunger and build capacity for the BackPack Program.
"The issue of hunger in America has long been a primary focus for C&S," said Gina Goff, C&S Director of Community Involvement. For years, we've partnered with well-respected hunger-relief organizations such as Feeding America, food banks and hundreds of community organizations working to end hunger. Through direct food donations and targeted grants, we are helping Feeding America reach the kids who are most at risk."
"We're pleased to have support from partners like C&S Wholesale Grocers, who have helped us grow and expand the BackPack Program, including"Pack 'til They're Back!"", said Karrie Denniston, Vice President of National Programs at Feeding America."I'm proud of the work that our food banks do to get nutritious, easy-to-prepare food into the backpacks of children in need to take home on weekends and school vacations."
As shown by Feeding America's recent study, Map the Meal Gap, one in six Americans suffer from hunger, including one in five children who live in food insecure households.
Everyone can help put a stop to child hunger. Here are a few ways to get involved.
Volunteer and donate at your local food bank. Use our Food Bank Locator to find the Feeding America food bank nearest you: http://feedingamerica.org/foodbank-results.aspx
Please contact one of our media representatives or call 800-771-2303
Feeding America is the nationwide network of 200 food banks that leads the fight against hunger in the United States. Together, we provide food to more than 46 million people through 60,000 food pantries and meal programs in communities across America. Feeding America also supports programs that improve food security among the people we serve; educates the public about the problem of hunger; and advocates for legislation that protects people from going hungry. Individuals, charities, businesses and government all have a role in ending hunger. Donate. Volunteer. Advocate. Educate. Together we can solve hunger. Visit www.feedingamerica.org, find us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter.