News release from the Community Harvest Food Bank of Northeast Indiana:
September is Hunger Action Month
Governor Daniels Declares Hunger Action Week in Indiana
(September 7, 2011) – This September, Feeding Indiana’s Hungry and Feeding America, the nation’s leading domestic hunger relief organization, are encouraging Hoosiers from all walks of life to raise awareness for hunger relief. Hunger Action Month is a multi-faceted effort to mobilize the public to end hunger in the United States.
As shown by Feeding America’s recent study, Map the Meal Gap, one in six Americans suffer from hunger. Here in Indiana, 16% of people are food insecure. For Hoosier children, the numbers are even greater–one in four Hoosier children is food insecure.
Food insecurity is defined by the United States Department of Agriculture as the limited or uncertain availability of nutritionally adequate and safe foods or the ability to acquire acceptable foods in socially acceptable ways.
In recognition of the state’s commitment to raising awareness of hunger, Feeding Indiana’s Hungry is pleased to announce that Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels has declared September 4th through September 10th to be Hunger Action Week across the state.
“Hunger is real and impacts more Hoosiers than you might think,” said Emily Weikert Bryant, Executive Director of Feeding Indiana’s Hungry. “The eleven member food banks of Feeding Indiana’s Hungry distributed nearly sixty million pounds of food last year, but the demand isn’t letting up. We need Hoosiers to be aware and take action in their local communities to help our neighbors facing hunger.”
The member food banks of Feeding Indiana’s Hungry are participating in Hunger Action Month in many ways. Community Harvest Food Bank of Northeast Indiana has several events aimed at raising awareness, raising funds and food, and raising volunteer assistance. All events are open to the public to help provide food for those in need. Events include:
“Singles Mingle for Hunger” Thursday, September 15th from 5 -7pm. Single people are encourage to join other like-minded, compassionate singles for a fun evening at the Community Harvest facility on Tillman Road. There they will meet new people and work together on a joint food sorting project, they’ll learn more about hunger relief, and enjoy refreshments with their new friends. The event is free and each participant will receive a goodie bag filled with gifts.
“USF Feeds the Fort” Kickoff Monday, September 19th. This massive community food drive occurs over several months. University of Saint Francis students, faculty and staff work tirelessly over the period to raise awareness and food. After CANstruction, this is CHFB’s largest annual food drive.
“T.G.I.Friday’s World Bartender Championship” September 21, 7pm-9pm. Watch the fun as local T.G.I.Friday’s bartenders compete in the Freestyle event showing off their expertise, flair, and tricks not to mention delicious recipes. Bid on fabulous auction items during this exciting event. All proceeds benefit Community Harvest. Bring a canned food item to donate to Community Harvest for a discount on a delicious T.G.I.Friday’s menu item. This T.G.I. Friday’s World Bartender Championship is a bracket style championship starting with individual restaurants and progressing through regional’s to World Finals in Dallas in March 2012. The Championship is part of a training program at all T.G.I. Friday’s. The Championship is entertainment focused, not alcohol focused. Proceeds of this fundraising event will benefit Community Harvest Food Bank of Northeast Indiana.
“1,500 Friends on Facebook!” Community Harvest has set a goal to reach 1,500 “Likes” by the end of the month to increase awareness of the fight against hunger in Northeast Indiana.
“30 Ways in 30 Days to Fight Hunger” is a list of 30 small things people can do to help feed their hungry neighbors.
“We are trying new things all the time to help raise awareness and reach new audiences,” said Jane Avery, executive director of Community Harvest. “Every person we can touch becomes a soldier in our fight against hunger in our area. If everyone did something small, it would make a significant impact. Together we are feeding Northeast Indiana.”
Community Harvest Food Bank, Feeding Indiana’s Hungry, and Feeding America are encouraging everyone to rally for hunger relief by doing three simple tasks this September: watch, share, and act.
[li]Simply visit www.hungeractionmonth.org, and watch the celebrity public service announcement (PSA) videos. Actors Ben Affleck, Matt Damon, Taye Diggs, and Ana Ortiz have partnered with Feeding America to show that hunger is indeed closer than you think. Watch these celebrities portray an actual Feeding America client experiencing hunger.[/li]
[li]Secondly, share the PSAs through your social media spaces, such as Twitter, Facebook, or your personal blog. Our goal is to reach 1 million people through digital platforms.[/li]
[li]Lastly, and most importantly take action. By visiting www.hungeractionmonth.org, or Feeding America’s interactive map, discover hunger numbers in your area and act locally.[/li]
[li]Volunteer at Community Harvest Food Bank.[/li]
[li]Share hunger stats with your friends. Tweet, post, and blog about hunger in your area.[/li]
[li]Donate to Community Harvest Food Bank, the member food banks of Feeding Indiana’s Hungry, or Feeding America. $1 donated helps Feeding America provide ten pounds of food and grocery products, or the equivalent of eight meals, to someone at risk of hunger.[/li]
To learn more about Hunger Action Month, please visit www.hungeractionmonth.org.
About Community Harvest Food Bank of Northeast Indiana, Inc.
Community Harvest Food Bank is the largest hunger relief organization in northeast Indiana, annually distributing nearly 10 million pounds of food. Community Harvest collects wholesome surplus food and grocery products donated by the food industry – products that might otherwise go to a landfill – and other donors and utilizes it for hunger relief. The food is distributed by nearly 470 churches and human service agencies in its member agency net-work, serving 21,200 unduplicated clients per week throughout its nine northeast Indiana county service area. These agencies include food pantries, soup kitchens, homeless shelters, rehabilitation centers, and youth and senior citizen programs. Community Harvest Food Bank is a member of Feeding America and Feeding Indiana’s Hungry (FIsH).
About Feeding Indiana’s Hungry
Feeding Indiana’s Hungry, Inc. is the statewide association of Feeding America affiliated food banks (formerly America’s Second Harvest). Our eleven member food banks serve more than 1,700 agencies in all 92 counties, providing emergency food assistance to Hoosiers in need.
Feeding Indiana’s Hungry, Inc. food banks statewide include:
Food Bank of Northwest Indiana, Gary
Food Bank of Northern Indiana, South Bend
Food Finders Food Bank, Inc., Lafayette
Community Harvest Food Bank of Northeast Indiana, Ft. Wayne
Second Harvest Food Bank of East Central Indiana, Inc., Muncie
Gleaners Food Bank of Indiana, Indianapolis
Terre Haute Catholic Charities Foodbank, Terre Haute
Hoosier Hills Food Bank, Bloomington
Tri-State Food Bank, Inc., Evansville
Dare to Care Food Bank, Louisville, KY
Freestore Foodbank, Cincinnati, OH
For more information on Feeding Indiana’s Hungry, Inc. visit www.feedingindianashungry.org.
About Feeding America
Feeding America provides low-income individuals and families with the fuel to survive and even thrive. As the nation’s leading domestic hunger-relief charity, our network members supply food to more than 37 million Americans each year, including 14 million children and 3 million seniors. Serving the entire United States, more than 200 member food banks support 61,000 agencies that address hunger in all of its forms.