Before the year ends, you can share the spirit of the holidays by helping the hungry. Make a donation to a charity that feeds them.
You don’t have to make a big donation: Just $10 makes a difference.
We recently wrote about Heifer International and World Vision, which provide livestock, wells and other life-saving items to impoverished Third World peoples.
We donate livestock as holiday gifts to friends and family who don’t need anything for themselves. The gift to them, in turn gives needy families food and other items (eggs, milk, wool) to the families and provides extra to sell for income.
In the U.S., many organizations fight to feed the hungry. Forty million Americans struggle with hunger, including more than 12 million children. Here are a few nationally recognized organizations that work to minimize hunger.
FEEDING AMERICA. Feeding America (photo #1) provides bags of groceries to the hungry. It’s the nation’s leading domestic hunger relief charity. It operates through a nationwide network of member food banks in needy communities. FeedingAmerica.org.
FOOD FORWARD. Food Forward (photo #2) fights hunger and prevents food waste by rescuing fresh surplus produce that we would consider “ugly,” too small, misshapen and otherwise unsaleable, connecting this perfectly good food with people in need. Each year, some six billion pounds of produce that go largely unharvested to rot in the fields. Retailers won’t accept “scarred” fruits and vegetables because consumers won’t buy them [source]. FoodForward.org
NO KID HUNGRY. No Kid Hungry helps provide in-school meals and has programs that teach families to shop smarter and cook healthier. NoKidHungry.org
SHARE OUR STRENGTH. Share Our Strength helps the 12 million children in America who lack sufficient nutrition. A household that is “food insecure” has limited or uncertain access to enough food to support a healthy life. Households with children are more likely to be food insecure than those without children. ShareOurStrength.org
On a local level, contribute to your local food kitchen or food bank. Just check on line for the organizations near you.
In New York City, for example, Citymeals-On-Wheels brings meals to homebound elderly.
By the way, December 31st is the biggest “giving” day of the year for Americans, because it’s the last day to make a tax-deductible charitable contribution.
According to The New York Times, charities raised 22.5 times more money on December 31st than any other average day last year. The entire last week of the year is a great week for giving, with the average gift size being 57% larger than the weekly average during the prior 51 weeks.*
*New York Times, December 17, 2009. Here are 2018 charitable giving statistics.
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