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Supporting Your Local Food Bank

We'd like to thank the Food Bank For New York City/FoodChange for tips on how to support your local food bank.

Click here for a map to find your local food bank, and check out Carol's checklist below.

Please note that the views and opinions expressed by Food Bank For New York City/FoodChange are not necessarily the views and opinions held by Bill Moyers or BILL MOYERS JOURNAL.

From Food Bank For New York City/FoodChange

Every single person can do something to help end hunger in America. Whether you have one dollar to give or one hour to share, you can make an enormous difference in the lives of the 25 million hungry people all across America. There are many opportunities to get involved in America’s Second Harvest’s network of more than 200 member food banks and food-rescue organizations across the country.

For those of you who would like to support your local food bank, here are some of the ways you can help:

Donate Funds: The food banks across the country rely on individual, corporate and foundation support to fund their hunger-relief efforts. You can make a one time gift or a monthly gift. You can donate online by the click of your mouse! Become a corporate partner and choose to support your local food bank with an unrestricted grant which can be applied wherever the need is the greatest. Or earmark your grant for a specific food bank program.

Make a special gift…Donate in honor of someone special, celebrate a special occasion, or remember a lost loved one.

Match Employee Giving: Consider a matching gifts program. It’s a simple and easy way to fight hunger, promote philanthropy, and support your employees.

Sponsor or plan an event. Most food banks offer a variety of event sponsorship opportunities to corporations, small business, and individuals. Being a sponsor is about much more than writing checks. It is about building a relationship with your local food bank. It is about getting to know them, their mission, and supporting your community.

Donate Food: Whether you are interested in donating a truckload of fresh bananas, a pallet of close-to-code granola bars, or cases of toothpaste, your donation will be gratefully appreciated.

Hold a food your community, your school, at your place of worship. It’s a fun and easy way to support your local food bank or food-rescue organization. Food drives provide one-third of the food that is distributed annually. Or, plan a Virtual Food Drive. With the click of a mouse, a Virtual Food Drive allows a company or organization to get food to those who are facing hunger in their community. Holding an online food drive saves the Food Bank the time and resources involved in a physical food drive. Most importantly, your donation will help that food bank to purchase the most needed food items.

Volunteer: Ending hunger in America depends on the volunteer work of literally millions of Americans. Eighty-five percent of all emergency food programs rely on volunteers to remain open, so volunteers are an essential part of a food program’s ability to serve their community. There are as many different ways to volunteer as there are individuals and communities across this country.
You can help out in your local community through activities such as:
• tutoring kids at your local Kids Cafe
• repackaging donated food for use at food pantries
• transporting food to charitable agencies
• serving food at a soup kitchen
• clerical work and event support
It's simple. Get involved today, and get your family and friends involved.

Advocate: With more than 35 million Americans hungry or at risk of hunger each year, it is imperative for you to voice your support for combating hunger in America to your elected officials. Your elected officials look to you for guidance on what is important to your community. Your individual support can make a difference for millions of hungry Americans. We encourage you to contact your local, state, city and federal elected officials about legislation that will help hungry Americans.


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I think that we should pull back are troops from the war in Afganistan.

Hey Bill,

All I want is a list of food banks in Brooklyn & Manhattan. There should be a choice of local outlets in smaller venues that need help more than the larger regional food bank.

you forgot one last action verb Legislate.

so much food goes to waste stores and restaurants dumping food when it could go to food banks and shelters. potential donors afraid of getting sued...well, maybe not in florida anymore!
this kid in florida got a bill into the statehouse that may change all of that.,0,6924963.story

Thank you for opening my eyes. Instead of going to the mall I will help people instead of the corporations.Throw out those coupons!

Give the people the food stamps.

Sorry Ethan, I'm so senile I had a John McCain moment. Thanks for being my Joe Leiberman. You may not realize it gets hot as hell and stays that way down here for weeks at a time. Some elderly people died last year without A/C. Asparagus does good because the ferns can take it. The members just wanted me to order rhubarb or woolen fleeces to prove you are real, because we've contacted some poseurs recently. Thanks. Grady tells me David Eddy is a real guy in Washington state, kind of an ethicist.
Sorry David also. Good night.

no - wrong guy - I'm considerably further north

the real quandry will come when those of us who have a goodly supply of food stored away will have to decide which of our improvident, hungry neighbors to feed and how to prevent being mobbed.

I dread that time - any thoughts?

(plant your rhubarb to the north of a tree or building - give it plenty of manure - I like horse best and mulch the hell out of it)

David Eddy: I figured you must be in Vermont, I was down in Plainfield last year doing research, my first visit. There are ruined people everywhere, but they are human, and deserve a jump-start just for breathing.
I did some writing for an admirable old doctor once and he told me I would never be wealthy enough to contribute to charity until I learned to look after my own interests. As a born socialist I can only partially comprehend what he meant, but I know many intelligent and indespensible persons feel that way. If I or my colleagues from Beret Co-op have offended you in any way please accept my regrets. We are pestering people trying to get reactions and communication. A diversified farmer, now that's a high calling.
We tried rhubarb here last year, supposedly heat tolerant (not likely) and it died in our blistering drought. If no one else wants it the co-op would be interested in buying some of yours for pies (not local I know, but just one Fed-exed chiller box). Got any sheep? We do handweaving too. "What a waste of time," most people say. Just email if interested. I imagine older Vermont natives are even more proud than ours.

I am in northern Vermont, the snow is just going off the fields now - sugaring still underway, the sap has been extra sweet this year but many days so cold it did not run.

Yeah, I grow lots of rhubarb - the foodshelf doesn't want any of that either.

A lot of the elderly are truly in need but too proud to go to the foodshelf - you have to get it to them diplomatically - many times I will be given a jar of pickles or jelly in return, one lady knit me a beautiful afghan.

There are also plots of land available in the community garden - all tilled and fertilized by volunteer farmers and free seeds from the local co-op.

Lets face it, some people are just plain lazy and in the habit of grabbing any handouts available that don't require work.

Ethan Allen: Either you're practicing your short story writing or you went to the wrong distributer. I wish we had some of your produce and that whole grain bread down here in N.C.
Yep, some poor people smoke and drink. Self medication is one relief from hopelessness and stress. Those people who want white bread and pop tarts explain why many poor people are obese. Processed foods load calories no exercise can burn and produce a metabolic hunger a mountain of food couldn't satisfy.
I feel so lucky to have never smoked or drunk, to have been a vegetarian for 37 years, but not everyone is as lucky as Etan Allen and me.
Car sales possibilities are nearly expended. Now they sell to people unlikely to pay-off, even after bankruptcy, with seven year loans. I guess if I were younger and could get a car I'd never have to pay for I'd get one and cruise around impressing my peeps and then maybe dog the bejesus out of that sucker before the repo man comes.This has produced another bubble in our economy. My information shows delinquent auto loans are behind the recent crisis at Wachovia (a retiree is my informant). So our economy is blown up on empty calories too, and its old heart is sputtering.
Ethan, I wonder where you saw these things, Anyway, thanks for the report. Good luck with your garden. They told me in Vermont that only honest, sweet natured people can grow rhubarb: Have you ever tried?

I have been in the habit of bringing my extra fresh produce to the local foodshelf. Last summer I was told 'no thank you, our clients prefer prepared food'. A local baker of good whole grain vread was told a similar story about the clients preferring white bread 'and poptarts'.

I noticed also that most of the 'clients' cars were far better than what I can afford and a good many had cartons of beer and cigarettes among the grocery bags visible on the back seat.

Anyway, I now bring my offerings to the senior meal site or individual elderly folks I know.

I was a recipient of food bank help in the mid-80s in a rural mountain county. As a lacto-vegetarian family my wife, then small son and I really appreciated those cups of frozen yogurt that kept us going as we packed for eviction.
I had been co-ordinator of the food bank in the town where my wife and I were attending college until a land tenure issue came up.
Professors who had identified me as a prime graduate school candidate shunned me because many of their spouses were realtors or land speculators. Student aid was cut off and social services denied us even food stamps.
This was some of the highest quality participant observation I've ever done because it confirmed the kind of coercion that occurred when a poor proud landholder (maybe just a small subsistence plot with a shack) or his/her near relative sought help in that community. To accept one box of food meant repeated brow-beatings, checks at the county office for tax liens, and continual harassment by prospectors trying to get the applicant's home inexpensively.
Imagine these people growing their own food, maybe some cash crops,on a homeplace owned since before the American Revolution being told to vacate to "who knows where" in a time of recession. I feared and loathed what my country was becoming then: Now my worst fears have been exceeded.
See how few bloggers even want to comment on this subject?

I can't help but wonder what good it will do to give more people more food stamps, if there is no food on the shelf for them to buy with their food stamps.

Earlier this evening on the News Hour, the rice shortage in poor Asian and African countries was discussed. It is truly criminal that farmers in Texas (and, perhaps other states) are being paid not to grow rice when the need is so great around the world. How can any member of Congress possibly justify this?

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