Save Summer–No Kid Hungry

Staci Strauss

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Did you ever know a kid who always seemed really hungry in the summer?

I did. A girl I knew at the apartment complex in which we briefly lived during the third grade was ALWAYS hungry.

She was resourceful, though, and always managed to visit a friend just as the family sat down to the dinner table.

She was so clever, in fact, that, sometimes she joined two or three families in one evening for dinner! At the time, she was called precocious, but looking back, her mom was so busy working, trying to make ends meet, that the cupboard was sometimes bare, and she was hungry.

That was long ago, and I was fortunate enough to never be hungry as a child. To me, summer was long, lazy days, no school, hot Texas weather, and trying to keep myself occupied in one way or another. I never had to think about where my next meal was coming from, but sadly, in today’s America, far too many children do.

Share Our Strength has joined a network called Why Hunger, in which those in need can enter their location and find the closest place their kid can receive a free breakfast or lunch, just as they do doing the school year.

Enter Share Our Strength. Their #savesummer #nokidhungry campaign is addressing this terrible tragedy.

This from their site:

21 million kids rely on free meals at school. What happens when school isn’t in session?

Only 3 million children in America receive a free summer meal when school is out.

Kids are not only missing out on necessary nutrition, but summer also becomes a time of anxiety and uncertainty.

Summer becomes a time of anxiety and uncertainty’. Just let that sink in for a minute.

Share Our Strength has, through their No Kid Hungry program, created a heat map on their website that shows where kids can go for a free summer meal.

They have joined a network called Why Hunger, in which those in need can enter their location and find the closest place their kid can receive a free breakfast or lunch, just as they do during the school year.

Sponsored in large part by the Rosenthal Family Foundation and Arby’s, who is matching donations, this program is a critical part of the food chain for our children most in need.

To learn more about childhood hunger in America, watch this documentary, A Place at the Table, and trust me, you will be shocked at how common food insecurity is in these United States of America.

I really don’t care why these kids don’t have access to a meal. Please spare me any politically-fueled diatribes on welfare moms, or people buying booze and cigarettes instead of feeding these kids.

So what! The kids are STILL IN NEED, no matter why. With the extreme cuts in the SNAP program, thanks to our short-sighted Congress, this problem is even more dire.

So let’s support Share Our Strength. Let’s #savesummer, and let no child for whatever reason, be hungry. #nokidhungry.

Aren’t you outraged at the idea of  children going hungry in the summer?

Photo credit: Staci Strauss