“The richest country in the world.” At the same time the United States claims this questionable title, 15.8 million children live with food insecurity in this great nation. These children often go to bed hungry, attend school with empty tummies, and worry when they will eat next.
This is the ugly reality, and the impacts of food insecurity have lasting effects on our society as a whole. Especially hard hit are children under the age of two. During this critical developmental stage, lack of proper nutrition can lead to learning disabilities. School age children may experience a variety of behavioral problems such as hyperactivity, aggression, anxiety, mood swings, and bullying.
Food For Thought, Inc. is a local non-profit organization combating food insecurity with one simple focus: Prevent area children from going hungry on weekends and during the summer.
Food For Thought is located in Carson City and serves local elementary, middle, and high school children. Food For Thought works autonomously from other programs to meet the needs of area children that generally rely on actions from parents or caregivers. The program is unique and revolutionary in its approach in reaching those who are helpless to access food programs themselves.
The program is discreet and very effective.
Known as the Backpack Program, Food For Thought provides each participating child with enough food for the weekend. Hundreds of meals are distributed every week during the school year. Last year, Food For Thought distributed some 13,509 bags of food that contained 54,036 nutritious meals. The food is healthy and includes fresh fruit whenever possible. During the summer, our program provides free lunches to children in need at two different locations within Carson City. In the summer of 2015, Food For Thought’s innovative program served over 4,500 meals.
Not only is the program targeting the most critically dependent in our society, but it is also effective and prudent with its funding. Re-investing back into the local economy, almost all of our budget is spent at area stores to provide the meals for our participants. And, to ensure the greatest percentage of dollars are spent directly on the children, Food For Thought relies heavily on its amazing volunteers.
Food For Thought’s continued operation is made possible through private and business donations. Amazingly, this pioneering program is not only effective in reaching needy children, it is surprisingly affordable.
Five dollars per child per weekend, that’s it!
Our seasonal letter campaign is our biggest single fundraiser; and, this year Northern Nevada Business Weekly has generously offered to help us reach new community minded partners. This message is to ask for your support in preventing childhood hunger in our community.
As we move into winter, we take time to reflect on the past year and look forward to the New Year ahead. We, at Food For Thought, are proud of our past accomplishments and are optimistic about the future; but, we need your help.
Please consider making a tax-deductible donation today, and help local children focus on being good students and not worrying about their next meal. Learn more at: NVFoodForThought.org or 775-885-7770.
Food For Thought is making a difference, one meal at a time.
With Our Thanks.
Story provided by Marlene A. Maffei, Executive Director of Food for Thought.
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