By Jasmine, Sawyer, and Abby
Hunger is a pressing problem in North Carolina.It’s a larger issue than most people realize. North Carolina rates as one of the top ten states with the highest percentage of citizens with food shortages, according to NC Food Banks. In schools, three out of four teachers say they have students that regularly come to school hungry (Table NC). Being hungry in school makes it hard to concentrate, causing poor academic performance. Some ways that schools try to minimize this problem is by having food drives. In 2014, a food drive involving 121 schools in Wake County donated a total of 94,136 pounds (WCPSS). That’s about 778 pounds per school. To help, we want to have a food drive at Martin. The entire school will participate. Our goal is to have 400 pounds of canned food by the end of two weeks. The donated foods will be taken to the Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina. The class that donates the largest amount of canned food will get Duck Donuts.
We want to help with this problem because we think that it is a very important issue. We care about this issue because it affects many people around us at school. Hunger is a big problem in North Carolina. However, not a lot of people realize how many are affected by it. At Martin, there are many people around us that face hunger, but most of the students don't know this. This situation would be better if more people were aware of the issue around them because a lot of us have enough food for ourselves and others.
Others should care about this issue because it’s not only a local problem, but a worldwide problem. The community can help people they know, such as their neighbors, classmates, colleagues, etc. If we all try to help this issue, there is so much we can do. Even though many may not know it, there are so many people that cannot buy their own food. If we help spread awareness or help by volunteering, we can help this issue.
Hunger is a very big problem not only in our community, but all around the world. In NC, it affects one in four children, according to NC Food Banks. Hunger is also associated with many other problems. Most families that are served by food banks have to choose between buying food or other needs. Some of these needs include housing, heating, and medical care. This has been a problem in NC for a very long time. North Carolina is a growing state with a growing population, which means more room for hunger. Some organizations, like the Backpack Buddies Program (BBP), are already doing things to help to solve this issue. The BBP is partnered with schools where students are in need of food. They help by delivering book bags filled with food and dry goods to students to bring home to their families (Hui, 2015). They also have a summer food service program to make sure students have enough to eat during the summer.
Hunger is a problem in our community because there are so many hungry people who are not able to afford their own food. When people are hungry, they are unable to work and are not getting enough nutrients in their body. Problems at work aren’t good, and this can lead to people not having money to support their family. This is an issue for low income families. Without money or a job, people could start doing other things, like stealing food to get by. This could lead to trouble with the law. Hunger puts lives in a downward spiral of trouble. If this issue is not taken care of, our community’s economy would go down and people would keep making bad decisions.
Many people have already started to work in our community to fight hunger. People are doing food drives and are volunteering at food pantries. There are a lot of organizations that are helping out. Some groups like the Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina (FBCENC) provide food for people who can't afford their own food. According to the FBCENC, they are trying to get 63-64 million pounds of food in a year.
Other groups also work with homeless shelters. With so many hungry people in North Carolina, there is usually a need for food to make meals. Food drives often help support meals by giving food to people who need it. From 2015 to 2016, North Carolina’s food banks distributed nearly 182 million pounds of food products, which is more than 150 million meals, according to the North Carolina Association of Feeding America Food Banks. (Iszler 2017) There is still a lot more that could be done.
Doing food drives can help, but someone is needed to distribute the food and to make hot meals. However, sometimes food perishes before the food is received by those in need. There is also a demand of regularly scheduled volunteers to help out with putting food in pantries and serving hot meals. There is also the costs of buying food for banks.The summer before last, Second Harvest, which serves 300,000 poor residents in 18 counties, ran out of food (Nichol 2013). If people kept donating, things like that won’t happen.
Ways to help:
There are many things that you can do to help. Donating food to your nearest food bank is a great way to start. We would like to help by hosting a food drive at our school. Our goal is to raise 400 pounds of canned food in two weeks. We will donate the food to the Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina. Below is our plan to take action.
Goal / Expected Outcome: We want to host a school food drive. We will collect by homerooms.
Our goal is to donate 400lbs of canned food to The Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina in two weeks. We will provide donuts to the home room that brings in the most food. We hope to make a difference! In reaching this goal we will help feed people all throughout North Carolina. We will allow them to eat a healthy meal that they can count on. We are helping to minimize the problem of going to school or work hungry. Many families will receive food that they don't have to pay for so that they can put their money towards other important necessities, like heating and cooling. These are just a few of the benefits that will result from our food drive. If you want to make a difference, you can host a food drive or accept donations at your school or work. Action step chart (click here.)
My name is Sawyer