A Conversation About Fighting Hunger
This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Walmart for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.
My daughter and I were having a conversation the other day about school and I was asking what she had for breakfast and lunch. After she told me she said,”Mom, did you know that for some kids at my school those are the only meals they have?” My heart dropped. I couldn’t imagine either of my children going hungry.
Did you know that according to the USDA, more than 50 million Americans live in food insecure households, and more than 16 million of those impacted are children?
WalMart is working with Feeding America and ten of the most recognizable food companies in America this spring to launch the third chapter of the Fighting Hunger Together initiative, which will focus on reducing hunger across the nation. The initiative will offer $3 million in grants for hunger programs and create millions of meals for Feeding America food banks and their partners across the US during the month of April.
How can you get involved? You can go online to vote and volunteer to fight hunger this spring with Walmart. Cast one vote per day for a Feeding America food bank or their partner agency in your local community. The 100 winning food banks or partner agencies will share $3 million in grants to fund hunger relief programs, and will be announced in May!
Help in the fight for hunger relief by casting your vote for a local food bank or volunteering at your local hunger relief organization, then stop back by here and Share comment on why you are voting and volunteering against hunger!
Originally posted 2013-04-14 08:00:01.
Here’s the problem with this.
1. 3 million is honestly a drop in the bucket. That’s 6 cents more per food insecure person.
2. Charities do wonderful work with food banks/pantries/hot meals but this issue isn’t something that should be handled on the basis of giving people permanent handouts. Having volunteered in food banks, let me tell you that a lot of the stuff given out is full of sugar and starch and not much else.
3. Those companies involved in this campaign are the entire reason we have this issue to begin with. This is nothing but a paltry PR move. What do I mean by this? There are two different types of food insecurity. One is not having enough to eat at all. The other is being in a “food desert” wherein access to cheap calories (junk food) is ubiquitous but things like fresh fruits and veggies are out of the reach of most people’s budgets. The first one has to do with companies, like Walmart, not being willing to pay a living wage. It isn’t impossible to pay your employees well and still be profitable. Companies like Costco prove this. The second one is directly due to how we subsidize agriculture in America. Our farm subsidies (YOUR TAX DOLLARS) go to subsidize commodity crops like corn and soy. Who is growing these products? Multinational corporations like ConAgra. They are getting our taxpayer dollars to grow these crops at massively cheap prices and then processing them into junk food. Most of what you can get in your grocery store now contains corn and/or soy derivatives. Who doesn’t get the subsidies? Growers of fresh fruits and vegetables. That’s why you can get a bag of Doritos for $1.59 but some broccoli will cost you twice that. As such, people who struggle to make ends meet are going to reach for the cheap calories…which are pretty much devoid of nutrition. This same situation is why we have the obesity epidemic in America. If you only have a dollar to spend to eat, you’ll go for that McDouble before you go for a banana. As such, campaigns like this are something that, candidly, we as Americans should be insulted by. It’s a way of trying to twist public opinion in a favorable way whilst keeping us from wondering why, in a country as rich as ours, anyone is hungry to begin with. They don’t want you to know that it is due to lobbyists spending millions in Washington to sway the agricultural committees in Congress and keep the status quo of these subsidies.
More effective ways to help, in my opinion:
1. Plant a food bank garden. Most food banks will take fresh produce from gardeners during the summer. If you don’t garden, check with your local CSAs. A lot of them will let you purchase a share to donate to a food pantry.
2. Educate yourself to the reality of our food system. I suggest you watch the documentary “A Place at the Table”. It is a great analysis of child hunger in America. Food, Inc. is also a great one.
3. Speak out. Get involved. Speak truth to power. Let your Congressperson know you are watching them and care about these things and that your vote is dependent upon them acting in the interests of the people and not corporations. Right now, we have a government basically run at the behest of lobbyists. This will never get fixed if we all don’t get determined to get involved. Congress spent over 700 billion on the TARP bailout…which helped rich bankers more than anyone else. On the flip side, they only authorized 4.5 billion OVER 10 YEARS toward child hunger. They get away with this because we let them.
Fantastic ways to help! I appreciate your honesty and your willingness to share…