I post this blog weekly hoping that something I say enables, inspires, or compels someone to improve the life of a child. I simply write from my heart and trust that I am helping in a small way by sharing my knowledge, education, and experience.
Today, I want to pass on some statistics from a study by the ConAgra Foods Foundation (www.conagrafoodsfoundation.org) that haunt me and have compelled our company to get involved. Children in America are hungry. Children in this great nation of ours should not be hungry, and we CAN change this if we all work together. Certain social purposes are overwhelming and seem too daunting to even begin to address. We CAN end child hunger in our country, but we must first know the facts:
* One out of every five children in America does not know where the next meal is coming from.
* Approximately 21.6% of America’s children are “food insecure.” This means they do not know how long the food they have will last and if they will have money for more once it’s gone.
* In 2010, 4.8% of all U.S. households (5.6 million families) accessed a food pantry one or more times.
These startling statistics make it clear that there is an urgent need and that there are hungry children in your community. I want to encourage every parent, regardless of the age of your child, to not only get involved but also to get your child involved.
Martin Luther King, Jr. said, “Everybody can be great because anybody can serve.” As a society, we have long underestimated the value of serving others—both to the recipients and to those who serve. Consequently, we have failed to instill in our children the value of service to others.
I encourage you to visit http://nokidhungry.org/ and http://www.childhungerendshere.com as starting points for your research about ways to get involved. Together, we can make a difference in the lives of the 16 million American children who face hunger every day. In the process, we can also make a difference in our own children’s purpose and self-worth by teaching them empathy, compassion, and the tremendous value of serving others.