This September the Vermont Foodbank, together with the Feeding America nationwide network of food banks, will mobilize across all 50 states in an effort to bring an end to hunger. Hunger Action Month is designed to inspire people to take action and raise awareness of the fact that 42 million Americans, including 13 million children, are food insecure, according to the USDA.
In Vermont more than 153,000 people struggle with hunger and may not know where they’ll find their next meal. That number includes 33,900 kids who may not have enough to eat.
September marks the tenth year the Feeding America network of food banks has organized this annual call to action. This year the campaign will focus on the strong connections between hunger and health.
The Hunger Action Month 2017 campaign asks people to consider how it must feel to live with an empty stomach, which puts a healthy life and a promising future at risk.
“With 1 in 4 Vermonters turning to the Vermont Foodbank network each year, it is critical that we all take action to end hunger,” says John Sayles, Vermont Foodbank CEO. “Our children cannot learn, grow, and succeed on an empty stomach. Together we must create a world where we all have the healthy food we need to thrive.”
“I’ve spent many days on the road this past year, visiting food banks, food pantries, and meal programs and meeting people who are facing hunger,” said Diana Aviv, CEO of Feeding America. “I’ve seen firsthand the anguish that food insecurity and hunger can cause. It is always heartbreaking to meet a mother or father who fears that they will not be able to feed their children. They know that their children cannot reach their full potential if they don’t have enough to eat.”
This year, on September 14, the Vermont Foodbank asks supporters to share what they couldn’t do without adequate nutrition by writing on an empty plate, “On an empty stomach I can’t ______,” and filling in the blank with something they couldn’t achieve without the nutrition we need to thrive.
These photos can be posted to social media with #HungerActionMonth, @VermontFoodbank and @FeedingAmerica to join the conversation.
The Vermont Foodbank encourages Vermonters to take action this month by volunteering, donating, and helping raise awareness about hunger in our communities. To build awareness around this issue, the Foodbank is collecting stories from Vermonters about how hunger has affected them and their communities and why they feel it is important to end hunger. Stories can be shared anonymously at: https://www.vtfoodbank.org/share-your-story.
“With the combined effort of Feeding America, the nationwide network of food banks and hunger advocates across the country, the goal of this campaign is to raise awareness about hunger and inspire Americans to get involved,” Aviv said. “The Feeding America network is leading the fight to end hunger in the U.S. We all have a role to play in getting food to our neighbors in need. Advocate. Educate. Volunteer. Donate.”
To learn more about the Vermont Foodbank and other ways you can get involved for Hunger Action Month in Vermont, please visit vtfoodbank.org/HAM.