How was your Thanksgiving? Hopefully you enjoyed time with family and friends and celebrated with a feast of food! Turkey and stuffing, sweet potato casserole, mashed potatoes, green beans, pecan pie… just a few of the treats you may have enjoyed during your recent Thanksgiving feast.
We are ever so grateful for the plentiful food we share at our holiday tables. While many of us have easy access to all the food we need AND want, it can be tough to imagine that many of our neighbors cannot count on the same easy access to food. I was lucky enough to spend some time with Second Harvest Food Bank’s President and CEO, Eric Aft just before Thanksgiving. He reminds us that many of our neighbors need his organization’s assistance to keep themselves fed not only at holidays, but also week to week. The Triad is so lucky to have a leader like Eric, keeping his eye on serving our neighbors and keeping them fed.
One in five adults in Northwest North Carolina is food insecure. One in four children are hungry in our community. Seniors in our area on fixed incomes are often forced to choose between buying enough food and covering their medical expenses. And though these statistics are stark, they only show that the need for food assistance is persistent in our community. Too many people are having to make tough choices in their budgets and are going hungry because there is not enough money for food after rent and utilities.
We are fortunate to have Second Harvest Food Bank working tirelessly to address the food insecurity that is so prevalent in our community. They partner with food banks, grocery stores, and meal assistance partners across 18 counties in Northwest North Carolina, ensuring that the food and money donated to Second Harvest helps our hungry neighbors through a variety of food assistance programs.
So, let’s all get involved to help our hungry neighbors! There are so many ways to get involved. You can visit the Second Harvest website and donate money directly to the food bank. You can also sign up to hold a food drive in your neighborhood. Non-profit organizations always need volunteers, so head to their website and see how you can give your time and talents to advancing the mission of Second Harvest.
What is striking about hunger in the Triad is that the people we see and greet each day could be some of the one and five adults and one in four children in North Carolina who do not have enough to eat. Hunger is hidden in our community, and the hungry are our neighbors who need our love and support. Thank you for joining us in wrapping our collective arms of encouragement and support around those less fortunate during this holiday season.