I write this post to bring attention to the sad reality in the United States and around the world: several millions of people do not have enough to eat (some studies suggest that 45 million Americans are living in poverty).
It is important for me to recognize the great privilege I have in many aspects of my life. Particularly, when it comes to food. I am not only able to eat 3 full meals per day, I am also able to have fun with different ingredients and can be creative and free in my meal making.
This basic survival need is not being met for all people. Why? There is more than enough to go around. Americans alone, throw away over $165 billion dollars of food annually (http://m.huffpost.com/us/entry/1819340).
One of the 5 core pillars in Islam is to provide alms to the poor and needy. In the holy Month of Ramadan, Muslims around the world fast from food and water (and other things) from sun up to sun down. There are many reasons why Muslims fast. Some reasons include having compassion and empathy for those who are less fortunate, to feel the pains of hunger and to exercise self restraint. Fasting the month of Ramadan should make one more compelled to help.
I am so grateful to my parents, who have instilled the spirit of giving in me from a young age. I clearly remember going to COTS (Coalition of Temporary Shelters) to deliver food and to assist in preparing meals for homeless. I share this for the sole purpose of encouraging you who have children to do such activities with them, as they will remember this for many years to come.
I first learned about No Kid Hungry while watching The Food Network. The Food Network selected No Kid Hungry as their charity of choice in 2007. No Kid Hungry aims to end childhood hunger by providing nutrition in schools, teaching families how to prepare meals and bringing awareness to this problem.
If you are interested in helping end hunger in America, I encourage you to check out the following organizations:
*All views in this post are my own.