*This post is sponsored by Feeding America and Scholastic. The ideas and opinions are all my own.*
I can’t remember a time in my life when I was hungry. I don’t mean the “this class is never going to end and I am so hungry right now” feeling, but the true, deep down hunger that millions of Americans feel on a day-to-day basis. Even worse, 1 in 6 children right here in the United States are facing hunger. Their fridges may be empty, their pantries bare, and many of them rely on the school system, which lets out for the summer, to cover even the most basic of their nutritional needs. As many as 22 million children receive free or price-reduced meals during the school year.
When a child is hungry it affects every part of their life. It’s obvious that it can affect their physical well being, but it also affects their self-esteem, their emotions, and their social interactions. This can be especially confusing for younger children in elementary school as other children may not understand their situation. That is why it is up to us, as parents, to not only pass on the gift of knowledge so our children can understand this epidemic, but also do something about it. Feeding America and Scholastic have partnered this year on the Hungry to Help program, which is designed to assist parents in teaching their young children how to support and care for other families and kids that are facing hunger. Kids are naturally empathetic and want to help, so with the right resources, we can all help together.
Family Action Plan
The Family Action Plan is designed to help you address the topic of hunger in your home. You can head here to download parent and teaching materials that will guide the conversation. Suggestions include ideas like:
- Making the conversation relevant
- Sharing your own experiences or those of friends or relatives
- Explaining how and why hunger happens
- Giving kids a way to process emotions
- Asking them how they want to help and encourage them to help
Kids Can Make a Difference
Kids can reach out to other kids and their community and make a real difference. With the right resources, your child can be a leader to help fight hunger this summer by volunteering, raising money and educating others around them. Here are a few suggestions on how your family may work together to set a goal, raise funds, and help someone in need around you:
- Lemonade stand
- Selling crafts
- Completing chores for neighbors
- Cleaning cars
- Dog or Pet sitting
Ready to learn more? Head to Feeding America to get started!