September is Hunger Action Month, a nationwide campaign to mobilize the public to take action against hunger. There are four ways to take action during Hunger Action Month:
- Donate to your local food shelf either in the form of donated food or money to help the food shelf buy food items to support working families, children, and seniors.
- Show your support by wearing orange on September 14 for Hunger Action Day and all month long.
- Start a food drive to donate to your local food shelf.
- Spread awareness and post your efforts on Facebook.
Hunger Action Month was established by Feeding America back in 2008 when the group decided it was time for the nation to get involved with the hunger crisis across the country. During September people everywhere helped to feed the needy in their neighborhood and county, working to ensure that the 48 million people who live with hunger every day can get some relief.
Food deprivation is a problem for more than just adults, children all over the country go to school without a proper breakfast. Hungry children have difficulty focusing, reduced alertness and low academic performance that ultimately leads to developmental setbacks. Plus, they are at a higher risk for health conditions like anemia and asthma. It is also noted that 63 percent of seniors are forced to choose between food and medical care. Seniors are at an increased risk of having a chronic condition, including diabetes and high blood pressure – conditions that can be reduced by consuming healthy food items.
Rural communities have a higher rate of hunger. There are approximately 2.8 million rural households that face hunger. Three quarters of the counties with the highest rates of food insecurity and 86 percent of the counties with the highest rates of child food insecurities are in rural areas. This is due to living in an area where jobs have a lower wage and a high rate of unemployment.
Hunger is seen in our community every day. The food shelf at Connections Store and More serves roughly 200 local families each month. Many families are put in tough situations where they have to choose between paying the bills or buying food. Some families need to pay for expensive medications and cannot afford food. With winter right around the corner, utility bills get higher making it difficult to purchase food as well. Other reasons may be due to losing a job or breaking up with a partner and leaving one person to pay the bills and buy groceries.
The food shelf at Connections Store and More is offered Mondays, Tuesdays and Fridays from 10am – 3pm and the 2ndSaturday of each month from 10am – 2pm. Government guidelines apply.
They also offer two food distributions each month: the 1st Thursday of the month is given by the Lions, Lioness and Webb Lake Community Club and the 3rd Thursday of the month is given by God's Serving People-Yellow Lake Distribution. Anyone from any community is welcome to come. There is no income limit.
“Healthy Minute” is brought to you by healthyburnett.org