As the holiday season approaches, an increasing number of people will find themselves facing impossible choices about basic needs and living without essential resources. That’s why Feed the Children, a leading nonprofit focused on alleviating childhood hunger, is kicking off its annual No Hunger Holidays campaign with a goal of delivering 10 million meals to help children, parents and caregivers fill the gap during this challenging time. The nonprofit is raising awareness around the recent surge in food insecurity and reminding people it feels good to give back to their community.
Feed the Children will hold resource rallies across the U.S. to provide food, resources and hope to families who are currently struggling with inflation and ever-increasing food prices. At each event, families will receive a 25-pound box of self-stable food; a 15-pound box of much-needed personal-care items (such as shampoo, lotion, laundry detergent); as well as additional items like books, toys and more.
In the U.S., 1 in 5 children are now estimated to be food insecure. In fact, more than 17 million families in America were food-insecure at some point in 2022. Price hikes at the grocery store have made food itself less affordable for lower-income families. Since 2021, food prices have increased by nearly 17 percent according to the USDA, and average rent costs were reported to rise by 8.6% between 2022 and 2023. Along with reduced federal SNAP benefits, these extra pressures put struggling families even closer to the edge.
DeeDee, a single mom has gone days without eating so she could put food on the table for her children.
“I would do anything to make sure they ate,“ she said. “Anything” includes skipping meals and making the hard choices between paying bills, buying clothes and grocery shopping. Such choices are especially difficult around the holidays.
“Christmas is very hard,” says DeeDee, noting that she must make sacrifices in buying food and in buying gifts. “I try to balance it so we’ll have a decent meal and a decent holiday season, because I can’t make it both. I have to cut everything in half. When holidays come around, we are really short on everything.”
For moms like DeeDee, Feed the Children brings hope to the holidays.
“Without food and resources from Feed the Children, I don’t know where we would be,” she says. “It is really a big help, it’s a blessing, and it helps us in more ways than I can explain. When money is low and times are hard, the food and resources go a long way.”
“This time of year, it gets tight –Thanksgiving and Christmas, and we have small children. It is just a blessing during the holidays that somebody takes the time to think about us,” said Tamara, a mom and Feed the Children recipient.
This holiday season, Feed the Children is working to support families like DeeDee’s through the assistance of corporate and community partners, volunteers and donors alike. The No Hunger Holidays campaign has numerous generous sponsors such as (Gold Level Sponsors) Americold, Concord Hospitality Enterprises, God’s Blessing’s Plan, Herbalife; (Silver Sponsors) Magic Johnson Enterprises, Niagara Water; (Bronze Sponsors) Caregivers on the Homefront, Chevron/PDC, Chickasaw Nation, Detroit Pistons, Dot Foods, Infolinks, Los Angeles Lakers, Norman Regional Health System, Plezi, Price Rite, Russell Stover, Second Ebenezer Church, Talking Rain, Yamaha Motor Corporation; and [Proud Partners], Bentgo, Blue Planet Eyewear, C.A. Fortune, Campbell Soup Company, Civitas Resources, Coastal Business Group, Dole, Guernsey, Impact Exploration & Production, Kao USA, Kraft-Heinz, Liberty Energy, Mattel, Novolex and Power Crunch.
“It is only through partnership that we can reach at-risk families during the holiday season,” said Travis Arnold, president and CEO of Feed the Children. “No child should go without, and Feed the Children is thankful for our partnerships that can help ease the burden many families are facing. If you are fortunate enough to experience joy and generosity around your own holiday table, you can make a tremendous difference when you give from your heart.”
To learn more about how to help Feed the Children create a hunger-free holiday season for children and families across America, visit feedthechildren.org/nohungerholidays.