Over 49 million people in the United States struggle with hunger because they do not have regular access to nutritious and affordable food. 15 million of these people are children, who are particularly vulnerable to the consequences of food insecurity. Most of these children come from middle-class or working-poor families – families who struggle to make ends meet. Each month these families are faced with a difficult decision: pay the rent or buy groceries. And in this situation, paying the rent always wins — because it is easier to be hungry than homeless.
Good nutrition is vital to childhood development and is important in establishing a foundation for “future physical and mental health, academic achievement, and economic productivity” (Feeding America). Child hunger increases during summer months, when students who often rely on free and reduced lunch programs suddenly find themselves missing one or two main meals a day.
FOCUS and Food
Across the nation, FOCUS combats hunger, serving meals three times a day, seven days a week, every day of the year. This year alone, FOCUS will feed close to 300,000 people in need and distribute millions of pounds of groceries. FOCUS North America was recently invited to the White House and heralded as a “Feeding Champion” because of our extensive work in providing meals and supplemental groceries to disadvantaged families and individuals. The White House also challenged FOCUS to expand our feeding programs nationwide and to target children, who through no fault of their own, often go hungry during the summer months.
2016 Summer Feeding Program
This summer, through our Summer Feeding Program, FOCUS will serve 46,000 meals in eight cities across seven states. And this is just the beginning. We hope to expand this program each year to new cities and sites using our core methodology of providing high quality, nutritious meals to children when they need it the most. Of course, we can’t do this without your help.
To accomplish this goal, we need you! Join FOCUS’ strong network of Orthodox parishes and volunteers across the country to serve children in need this summer. FOCUS will provide all necessary program oversight, staffing, insurance coverage and all food items. We encourage you, your family and your parish to get actively involved! If you do not live in one of the cities listed above, consider bringing a group from your parish to one of our target cities. Your group will help serve children during the day and then you will be free to explore the city or assist with other hands-on FOCUS projects.
For information on how to get involved, please contact:
Summer Feeding Program Administrator
Tel: (866) 267-3083