September is Hunger Action Month, during which individuals and organizations come together to raise awareness and funds to help the food insecure. According to Feeding America, close to 1 million people in our state alone are food insecure and 300,000 of those people are children.
The 2017 Hunger Action Month campaign asks people to “consider the universal feeling of an empty stomach, and how on an empty stomach, we cannot reach our full potential.” The Feeding America empty plate campaign asks supporters to write on an empty plate a) what they “can’t do on an empty stomach” and b) what they “can do to help end hunger.” With your help, this campaign will raise awareness about hunger and inspire Americans to get involved in the fight to end it.
Hunger Action Family Day
Join Jersey Bites at Fulfill‘s (formerly the FoodBank of Monmouth and Ocean Counties) Hunger Action Family Day on September 5, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Neptune headquarters. Activities will include kids’ crafts, carnival games, family tours, garden activities, and concert ticket and event giveaways with local DJs. Enjoy fruit smoothies, WindMill hot dogs, a selfie station, ice cream, and an S.O.S. (Stuff Our Silo) Food and Fund Drive.
Volunteers (including kids!) can help assemble 500 healthy “snack packs” that will go to students in after school programs throughout the month of September. Kids will also receive special cow banks while supplies last, so they can learn more about helping kids in need. Visiting families who would like to participate are encouraged to bring a bag of nonperishable food and to wear closed toe-shoes. Fulfill is located at 3300 Route 66 in Neptune. If you can’t make it, tune in for the organization’s live Facebook feed to catch some of the day’s events. For more ideas on how to participate and make a difference during Hunger Action Month, check out the 30 Days – 30 Ways calendar for some great suggestions.
Atlantic City Seafood Festival
On September 9 and 10, the Atlantic City Seafood Festival will once again support the Community FoodBank of New Jersey – Southern Branch by donating a portion of the proceeds to the organization. Also, back by popular demand, the Chowder Cook-Off will benefit the FoodBank! Join us at the Atlantic City Boardwalk on Saturday, September 9, and Sunday, September 10.
Hunger Action Day
Take action on Hunger Action Day, September 14. Wear orange to show your support for hunger relief. Share your pledge to help fight hunger with #HungerActionMonth on social media. Make monetary donations to a hunger relief program (Fulfill.org or The Community FoodBank of New Jersey) or drop off food donations at your local food pantry.
Students Change Hunger
On September 18, Students Change Hunger kicks off and runs through December 11. This is a great opportunity for NJ students—from preschool through college—to compete in a food and fund drive. Scoring is based on pounds of food donated, total monetary donations, and hunger awareness efforts. Learn more and register your school here.