At least 12.5% of Western Massachusetts residents are living below the poverty line, and that number is growing.
49 million Americans currently struggle with hunger. It may be difficult to comprehend the magnitude of such a number, but it comes into perspective when you think of it another way. One out of every six people in the U.S. struggle with hunger, and the numbers for children are one in five. Here in Western Massachusetts, one in eight of our neighbors lives with food insecurity. Our childhood food insecurity rate is the highest in the state, nearly equaling the national number of one in five. With numbers so staggering, it’s likely that every one of us knows someone who has struggled with hunger. These are our neighbors, our co-workers, our classmates, our friends, and even our families. And they often struggle in silence.
In order to lend a voice to our neighbors struggling with hunger, The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts, along with over 200 other food banks in the Feeding America network, are asking you to Speak Out Against Hunger during Hunger Action Month this September.
Beginning Saturday September 1st and running through the duration of the month, Hunger Action Month is a national campaign aimed at lending a voice to those who struggle with hunger, and raising national awareness of a far too common domestic problem.
One of the best ways to do that is to spread the word online. There are over 163 million Facebook users and over 107 million Twitter users active in the United States and Hunger Action Month hopes to use those collective 270 million voices to spread the word by donating status’ to hunger and using the hashtag #HungerAction. It all starts with you. Tell a friend, share a story, and help spread the word.
You can also Go Orange on September 6. Wear orange and change your profile image on Facebook . Be sure to let everyone know that you’re wearing orange to Speak Out Against Hunger.
There are many other ways to get out and take action during September. Download and print The Food Bank’s “30 Ways in 30 Days” calendar. This calendar outlines small, daily tasks that, when completed in large numbers, can make a tangible difference in the fight to end hunger
Hunger Action Month will culminate with a day-long bicycle event, Will Bike 4 Food. With 4 different rides to choose from, riders of all ability levels can raise money for The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts and know they are fighting hunger in the community while enjoying a great day in one of the most scenic areas of Western Mass.
Whether you support Hunger Action Month for one day or all 30 days in September, every voice helps to spread the word and to fight hunger. For more information, visit our Hunger Action Month page.
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