I write a lot about food on my blog because it’s such an important part of our daily lives. Obviously we need food to survive and thrive, but food is also important to us on a social level. We love to invite people over for dinner, take a meal to a sick friend, and even treat our neighbors to a yummy snack. Food is important to us on many different levels of our life.
As a mother, I often feel like I spend more time preparing food for my family than I spend on any other task in our home. It can be overwhelming and rewarding at the same time. I get frustrated when something doesn’t get put back in the right place in the fridge or in the pantry because I have to stop and re-organize everything to get it all to fit. Really? I get frustrated because my family has food?! Boy, does that stop me in my tracks especially since I know that childhood hunger is a major issue in both my local community and in the world.
In our school district, the fifth largest in the country, over 55% of the students receive free or reduced lunch. The federal government through the school district provides these kids with breakfast and lunch during the school year. But what about dinner, the weekends and summer break? And on a global scale, there are so many children that go without any food every single day. I can’t imagine what it’s like to be a parent watching your child deal with hunger every single day.
A few years ago I was introduced to a local non-profit organization called Three Square whose mission is to provide three square meals to people who otherwise would not eat. One of Three Square’s programs focuses on kids. Each week during the school year volunteers gather to fill backpacks full of food. The volunteers head to schools on Friday afternoons to hand out the backpacks of food to students who otherwise wouldn’t eat over the weekend. During the summer Three Square collaborates with other organizations to provide an open meal program for any child. Meal sites are located throughout the city and kids can just show up and eat. I had the privilege of working with Three Square’s predecessor years ago and it was very moving to see the appreciation and joy on each child’s face when they received their backpack.
On a more global level, our family sponsors a child in the Phillipines through World Vision. Every month we give the equivalent of a dinner out to a help our sponsored child, Merry, receive food, medical treatment and an education. In addition to our monetary donation, we also send our sponsored child gifts, letters and cards throughout the year – and receive letters from her in return. It has been such a pleasure to receive photos and updates from her over the past three years and watch her grow and blossom in to a young woman. My kids enjoy sending and receiving letters from their “sister” on the other side of the world and learning about the Philippines.
My kids have never, ever gone hungry. Our fridge and pantry have never been empty. My family has no idea what it’s like to go to bed with hungry tummies for lack of food and I am so thankful for that. I’m also thankful for organizations like Three Square and World Vision who step up and fill a basic need on both a local and a global level.
Do you have any causes or organizations that are dear to you? Tell me about them and leave a link in the comments so we can all learn about them!
Kleenex brand, America’s softest tissue, knows that once one experiences the softness of Kleenex brand tissues, they will be eater to share it with other cold and flu sufferers, friends and strangers alike, as a way to show they care. This cold and flu season, make the care complete with a Kleenex Brand Care Pack, and together we’ll turn a seemingly-small gesture into something bigger, to make everyone feel better. Visit kleenex.com/softness to learn more.
Disclosure: Compensation was provided by Kleenex via Glam Media. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of Kleenex.