As the holiday season approaches, too many people – including more than 16% of Oklahomans living below the poverty line – find themselves exhausted and without essential resources. That’s why Feed the Children, a leading nonprofit focused on alleviating childhood hunger, will kick off its annual No Hunger Holidays campaign with two events with Norman Regional Health System this week to help children, parents and caregivers fill the gap during this challenging time.
2021 has been a difficult year for our most vulnerable children and families who have faced widespread hardship and uncertainty because of the pandemic’s far-reaching effects. In Oklahoma and across the U.S., nearly 1 in 6 children is now estimated to be food insecure. The nonprofit is raising awareness around the recent food insecurity surge and reminding people it feels good to give back to their community.
Feed the Children will work with community partners, including several schools, to hold distribution events across the state where 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 total, the nonprofit will serve thousands of Oklahomans throughout the holiday season and will deliver more than two million meals in November and December to families across the U.S.
For parents like Brandy, these simple items can make a difference in their lives.
“We've been to food pantries in the past,” she said. “There were times when we had no food and no food stamps. If we could just drive through and get something, even if it were bread and peanut butter, then that made the whole difference even if for just one day.”
With all of this past year’s challenges, it’s important that we celebrate with our families and those we love, but the holiday season reminds us that those of us who have enough are called to help our neighbors who often go without.
“We believe that no child should go to bed hungry, especially during a time full of warmth, love and sharing,” said Travis Arnold, Feed the Children president and CEO. “But the reality is, millions of children face this hardship every day. With the help of our corporate and community partners, I’m hopeful that we can help provide some of the joys of the holiday season to our friends and neighbors during this special time of year.”
To learn more about how to help Feed the Children create a hunger-free holiday season for children and families in Oklahoma, visit feedthechildren.org/nohungerholidays.