For the DES Coordinated Hunger Relief Program and food banks throughout the state, September is a big opportunity to take action. Hunger Action Month is a time for the Feeding America network to rally the public to take action on the issue of hunger and food insecurity. The DES Coordinated Hunger Relief Program contracts with three Regional Food Banks in Arizona--Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona, United Food Bank and St. Mary’s Food Bank Alliance--to provide food to those in need.
How you can help make a difference during Hunger Action Month? Try one of the suggestions below!
Donating, whether money or food, is a great way to help local food banks. Most donations to food banks are made between Thanksgiving and Christmas--which is great--but donations are needed year-round. Monetary donations allow the food banks to buy food during the less popular months for giving.
Volunteer with a food bank
It doesn’t always take a big financial investment to make a big impact. Volunteering is a great way to spend your time making a difference. By volunteering, you give families the opportunity to use the money they have towards bills and other living expenses while being able to have food on the table. In addition, volunteering can be a great family gathering, team bonding or employee engagement event. Witness firsthand how your presence and support are affecting those in your community!
To find a food bank in Arizona, visit the Association of Arizona Food Banks website.
Host a Food Drive
Food drives help stock shelves and play a vital role in encouraging community participation. Collect non-perishable food from staff at your office or have your daughter’s soccer team host a food drive at her school. Most food banks will supply and deliver collection boxes they will then pick up when they’re full. Visit the St. Mary’s Food Bank Alliance, Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona or United Food Bank website to host a food drive.
Participate in Hunger Action Day: September 12
Wear orange on September 12 to celebrate Hunger Action Day and spread awareness. According to Feeding America, Hunger Action Day is where efforts across the country are focused for greater impact. Wearing orange, sharing hunger facts with your friends and family, and raising awareness of the impacts of hunger are a few of the many things you can do!
By Isabella Neal