This September, Second Harvest Food Bank of the Mahoning Valley, 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 41 million Americans, including nearly 13 million children, are food insecure, according to the USDA.
In the Mahoning Valley more than 86,000 people struggle with hunger and may not know where they’ll find their next meal. That number includes one in four kids who may not have enough to eat.
September marks the eleventh 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 2018 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.
“The Food Bank through our member agencies fill thousands of requests for food each week from families in the Mahoning Valley,” said Michael Iberis, executive director, Second Harvest Food Bank. “In addition our distribution of food through 148 member agencies, more than twenty Valley schools have started a food pantry within their school buildings to help ensure children receiving the food they need to grow, learn and thrive.”
Hunger Action Day®, the second Thursday in September, is a day where efforts across the country are focused for greater impact.
This year, on September 13th, Second Harvest Food Bank of the Mahoning Valley 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. The Food Bank will also be “Painting the Valley Orange” and is asking the community to join them by wearing their favorite orange outfit (orange is the symbolic color of hunger) to raise awareness that 1 in 6 people and 1 in 4 kids are struggling with hunger in the Mahoning Valley. Photos can be posted to Facebook with #HungerActionMonth, @SHFBMV and @FeedingAmerica.