September is Defeat Hunger Month and Feed the Children is working to help families and communities achieve stable lives, while providing food and resources to help them today.
The nonprofit works 365 days a year to stamp out hunger and make a difference in the lives of children and families across the United States and in 10 countries around the world.
might be surprised to learn that in the U.S., one in every six children will struggle with hunger or food insecurity. But, did you know that around the world, one in nine people don’t have enough food to lead a healthy and active life?
For Feed the Children, defeating hunger means working with public and private partners to ensure everyone, everywhere, has access to the safe, healthy and nutritious food they need. By working with a vast network of community partners, the organization provides food and essentials, education initiatives, and disaster response to help children and their families be independent and self-reliant.
These items make a difference for Monica, a mom to two boys - Brody and Nathan. Despite working a full-time job, she said that many times there’s “more month than money.” “There’s many times where things come up unexpectedly and I have to make sacrifices,” she said.
Monica recalled a time when most of her income had to be used to pay an unexpectedly expensive utility bill. “I absolutely was down to my last in everything,” she said.
Monica attended a Feed the Children event to receive food for her sons, but said she was moved to tears when she found so much more including household essentials as well as Avon products. “I was blown away because I wasn’t expecting that. We just needed something to kind of get us through to the end of the month or to my next payday. I was just so surprised,” she said.
Feed the Children has five distribution centers in the United States including Bethlehem, Penn., Elkhart, Ind., LaVergne, Tenn., Oklahoma City, Okla. and Ontario, Calif. which serve as hubs to provide shelf-stable food and much-needed essentials to families across all 50 states and the District of Columbia.
In addition to their work in the U.S., Feed the Children also works around the world serving families in El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Kenya, Malawi, Nicaragua, the Philippines, Tanzania and Uganda. There the nonprofit provides a child-focused community development approach which emphasizes four key programs including food and nutrition, health and water, education and livelihoods. The organization’s efforts provide parents with the opportunity to gain the skills they need to raise well-nourished and thriving children.
These efforts are making the difference in the lives of children like Diego, 9, who lives with his parents in the rural mountain community of Guasuyuca, Nicaragua. Diego had suffered from chronic malnutrition for many years and his growth was stunted from receiving inadequate nutrition. However, he now eats a nutritious, balanced, vitamin-rich meal five days a week at a Feed the Children feeding center. This varied diet has already improved his health and is helping him put on weight.
“With the support of Feed the Children’s programs, we feel blessed,” Diego’s mother said. “Mothers like me feel motivated to work harder for the welfare of our families.”
Through domestic and international efforts, Feed the Children distributed 88.6 million pounds of food and essentials across the United States and around the world valued at $344 million in fiscal year 2018. Through partnerships and programs, the organization’s outreach benefited approximately 5.1 million in the U.S. and more than 1.4 million internationally, for a total of 6.5 million children and families globally.
“We recognize hunger can’t be fought alone, but by working together, we can help provide children and families with the food and essentials they need to flourish and break the cycle of poverty,” said Travis Arnold, president and chief executive officer of Feed the Children.
For more information on how you can help during Defeat Hunger Month, visit feedthechildren.org/pages/defeat-hunger-month-2019/. Each gift multiplies seven times to deliver food to families in the U.S. and around the world.