Winning the Fight Against Childhood Hunger and a $25 Walmart Gift Card Give Away!

I am a member of the Collective Bias®  Social Fabric® Community.  This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias®, Odwalla, and Champions for Kids #cbias #SocialFabric  A positive review was not required and as with all Busy-at-Home reviews, the views and opinions expressed are wholly my own and based on my personal experience with the product. Neither Collective Bias, Odwalla, nor Champions for Kids are affiliated in any way with the giveaway. The giveaway is sponsored and administered by Busy-at-Home.

Well, by now, you and I have had many conversations about Champions for Kids.  We’ve walked through the excitement of several Simple Service Projects, so I know you’ll understand when I get really enthusiastic about the CFK Simple Service Project for May and ask you to get involved in your own hometown.  This one is BIG and you have the power to make such an impact!  CFK’s partner for May is Odwalla, who makes nutritious snack bars and fruit juice smoothies, which makes them a perfect fit for this month’s important project.

Odwalla Nutrition Bars

I was able to pick up Odwalla nutrition bars in 6-pack boxes and even more flavors were available, as singles.  They will make a good nutritious snacking option in the bags, alongside the main dish recipe ingredient items that I am also donating.  I found them in the produce department in my Walmart.

Childhood hunger is REAL in the United States.  We are used to thinking of it being a problem in third world countries, but it’s somehow harder to accept that children in our own country, our states, and even our own communities, could be going hungry.  We’re always sure we would see it — that, somehow, we would know.  Sadly, that perception is way off.  More and more people in the United States are without work, struggling to find a job and to provide for their families.  Whatever the circumstance that causes it, more than 16 million children in the United States, (that’s 1 in 5 kids), live in households that struggle to put food on the table.  Around 22% of kids under 18, in America, live in poverty;  and for many American children and their families, one of the most difficult “hunger seasons” is about to begin, for them.  Right now, about 9.8 million children receive free or reduced price lunches, at school.  10.6 million more are eligible, but go without.  When school lets out for the summer, those children will lose access to the school breakfasts, lunches and after-school snacks they receive during the regular school year. Only 1 out of 6 children who receive free or reduced-price meals, during the school year, continue to receive meals during the summer months. Low-income families face even more challenges, during the summer, as they find themselves needing to stretch their food budgets to provide additional meals, throughout the day, for their children who are now at home, instead of school.

grandkids

Three of my favorite little faces in the world and another reason this project is important to me. We are blessed to not have to worry about putting food on the table, but that hasn’t always been the case. Once we were finally able to provide for our family on our own, it was important to me to teach our children, and now, our beautiful grandchildren, to be generous and serve others with great love and compassion. Modeling service and generosity is the best ways to teach those traits!

Don’t fool yourself into thinking you would necessarily see it, or that it would be obvious.  It’s a tough, and often embarrassing thing to admit you can’t afford food for your family.  Both adults and kids are often very good at hiding their struggle, because they mistakenly feel ashamed about their situation.  Look at that statistic, again.  1 in 5 kids in the United States live in households that struggle to put food on the table.  How many kids do you know?  If you lined them all up, statistically, with every fifth child, you would be looking into the face of someone hungry — someone who’s life YOU have the power to improve.

food pantry

Blue Valley Community Action Food Pantry – This is where we make our donations. For the privacy of those utilizing food pantry services, we aren’t able to take photos inside. It’s a great organization with branches that serve in multiple locations in southeast Nebraska.

And THAT is why I love Champions for Kids.  They aren’t looking for a grandiose gesture or contribution to, singlehandedly, solve the whole problem.  What they understand is that the small, meaningful efforts of multiplied individuals, has the power to change the lives of many thousands and millions of children, all across our country.  Each of us, individually doing what is within our means, in our own communities, and spreading the word to encourage others to also do what they can, could literally feed a nation of hungry children.  The individual contributions of millions have already provided resources and food for children in need across America, through Champions for Kids Simple Service projects.  This month’s project has me inspired to keep the ball rolling in my community, by donating healthy snacks and meal ingredients to our local food pantry, as school is coming to a close, for summer.

food donation

More of the items for my donation. I’m excited to provide the ingredients for one of our family’s favorite main dish recipes along with the other items. Be sure to check with your local food pantry. We are very fortunate, as ours has refrigeration available for meat and produce donations, too.

Having worked with our local food pantry on several projects, one of the things that the director shared with me, that has always stuck, is that people will often come in to select food for their families, but not be familiar with some of the available ingredients or how to use them.  Whenever I take food donations there, now, I always “package” them in a sort of family pack.  Instead of selecting random ingredients to donate and put out on the shelves, I include recipes and all the necessary ingredients to prepare them.  These pre-bagged contributions are set aside and provided as a complete package to a family who comes in for assistance.  It ensures that they won’t have to shop for any extras to be able to successfully prepare a nutritious meal or dish for their family.  You can work with Champions for Kids and Odwalla to be part of the solution, in your hometown, too.  Take a look at my shop album and get inspired with some ideas for contributions to your own local food pantry.  Then get out there and do it.  It’s a small effort with HUGE impact and I know Busy-at-Home readers are creative, loving people who will rock this project!  I can’t wait to see what you do!  And CFK wants to thank you, too, so be sure to tell them about your project, using this link.

bags

Three “family bags” ready to go – packed full of ingredients, snacks and recipes. The Walmart totes are only $1 and are the perfect way to include something else useful and reusable.

GIVEAWAY: Leave a comment, on this post, telling me what you plan to do to help fight childhood hunger in your community, this summer.   Once you’ve submitted your comment, then use the Rafflecopter form, below, to register your entry in the drawing to win a $25 Walmart Gift Card!

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Comments

  1. Debi H. says

    There are several local charities that we contribute to either financially or through donation of food. We also leave food out by the mailbox for our letter carrier to pick up during the local food drive.

  2. says

    We love to frequent the mission with all of my “stuff” that I purge all the time. :) For someone who doesn’t like a lot of stuff, mine seems to multiply. lol

    • says

      Nicole, I love the idea of donating extra garden produce! We have a local insurance agency that has actually made itself a drop-off center for garden produce that will be donated to the local food pantry. I love the idea of being able to put fresh, local food products in the hands of those who really need it. So glad you stopped by!

  3. Stacey B says

    I always donate extra foods, or items I get on sale or with coupons that we don’t really need.

  4. Wanda McHenry says

    Our church has a food pantry which we are always giving to. Also, when the scouts or schools are collecting food at grocery stores, we always pitch in there too!

  5. Laura says

    I’ve been wanting to organize a mission with the ladies at my church to bake goodies and deliver them to shut ins in our community

  6. Carolsue says

    When there is a Buy-1-Get-One Free non-perishable item, I put it in the Second Harvest Food Bank bin in the grocery store on my way out.

  7. says

    That is absolutely wonderful that your local food bank has a refrigerator for perishable donations! I also love the family-packs that you put together – adding a homemade recipe with the ingredients is such a great idea and adds a nice personal touch. Thank you for sharing your donation. :)

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