Oct 21 2009

Graehm Gray-Trick or Treat for UNICEF!

As we approach the 2009 Halloween Evening, and start thinking about the massive amounts of sweets our children will be exposed to, it’s important for all of us to remember what happened on that Halloween night in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania back in 1950. Five children went door to door with their pastor to collect money for their friends in post World War II Europe.  At each door, they not only opened their bags for candy, but held out empty milk cartons to collect coins for children in need overseas. They collected a total of $17 and donated the entire amount to UNICEF. The ‘Trick or Treat for UNICEF’ program was started by that philanthropic action. In 1967, President Lyndon Johnson declared Halloween, October 31st, to be “UNICEF Day.”  Since 1950, over $130 million has been raised by the ‘Trick or Treat for UNICEF’ campaign. Children from all over the world participate in the program including Canada, Ireland, Mexico and Hong Kong.  Monies raised go for vaccines, clean water and improved nutrition for less fortunate children.  Movie and TV star Sarah Jessica Parker, herself a trick- or- treater for UNICEF as a child served as the 2006  “Trick or Treat for UNICEF”  spokesperson and UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador . “My involvement with ‘Trick or Treat for UNICEF’ is particularly dear to me because I participated as a child,” Ms. Parker said. “Halloween can be ...

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Sep 04 2009

Philanthropists for Change

Paradoxically speaking, is it possible for hunger and obesity to co-exist within countless numbers of American families? If so, what can you do to help your students become philanthropists for change by ending malnutrition and obesity for millions of American children? Curriculum supported community service projects provide students with the opportunity to become actively engaged in the learning process and develop leadership potential while increasing academic preparedness. Derived from Ancient Greek, philanthropy means “to love people.” The act of donating goods, services, money, and time to support a socially beneficial cause at no material reward to the donor is the best gift one person can give to another. Much has been written lately about the emotional, physical, and educational benefits associated with participating in global community service projects. The myriad of benefits are as vast as the aid organizations we seek to adopt. In order for children to become conscientious and productive members of society, they must be provided with engaging, meaningful, and relevant opportunities to develop a sense of civic responsibility. Not only will students benefit from increasing their knowledge base, but it will also help your students to develop respect for others, patience, tolerance, and compassion for people who may be different, leadership skills, and citizenship. How many times have you heard your students ask, “Why do we have to learn this stuff anyway?” I must admit that these words also ...

Posted in: Community,Teacher To Teacher

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Sep 03 2009

Daily Bread Food Bank

By Rocio Blanco Garcia Have you ever been so hungry that you felt sick? You are not alone. Millions of people today go to bed with an empty stomach and without the hope of having a better tomorrow, but thanks to non-profit organizations like the Daily Bread Food Bank (DBFB), some get a modest meal. The DBFB, the largest food bank in the state of Florida, started in 1981 to reduce hunger in South Florida. It's an affiliate of Feeding America and a member of the Florida Association of Food Banks. Its goal: Reduce hunger by reducing the amount of food we waste each day. According to www.stopthehunger.com, today, more than 15 tons of food will be wasted in the United States, and families in our country will spend more than $13 million on food that will be tossed. $13 million would allow the DBFB to serve more than 78 million meals. Because the organization is a non profit, it buys food at discount rates. Each dollar the organization receives is enough to serve six meals. DBFB also accepts food donations. DBFB, together with its 800 affiliate organization, feeds people in Miami-Dade, Broward, Palm Beach and Monroe Counties. But in the last year, with the economic downturn, the organization has seen a shortage of food. “The economy has affected us from the perspective that there is an increase demand of food,” said Anthea Pennant, who works at ...

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Sep 03 2009

More People Using the Food Stamp Program

By Rocio Blanco Garcia The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), commonly known as the Food Stamps Program, brings food to millions of household today, and it could bring food to yours too –if you qualify. The program which started under the leadership of Henry Wallace, the Secretary of Agriculture in 1939, provides food to low and no income people in the United States. The program, however, recently changed its name to include the Federal Government's focus on providing beneficiaries with something more than food. The Government is interested in making good and healthy nutrition available to everyone. But the change in the name did not bring changes to the requirements applicants must meet. Those who qualified to receive assistance under the previous name may still qualify today. The requirements: No more than $2,000 in bank accounts and a gross monthly income of $1,907, or less, for a family of three. Applicants must have a social security number, and all able-bodied adults must meet certain work requirements. If you are eligible for the program you could receive up to $130 for one person and more than $250 for a couple. But to get the money you must first apply. To apply for benefits or to gather more information about the program you must contact your local SNAP office, where you will fill out the state application form. If you qualify, you will receive an electronic card that is ...

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Sep 03 2009

Chef Allen Susser: Ending Childhood Hunger

By Chef Allen Susser Regional Spokesperson and Chair Share Our Strength's Taste of the Nation Miami Americans are feeling the effects of a troubled national economy. Soaring fuel and food prices are taking their toll on families, with no sign of relief in sight. These economic hardships affect our youngest and most vulnerable citizens. In the United States, more than 12 million children are at risk of hunger. In Florida alone, more than 627,000 children are at risk of hunger. Nearly 1 in 10 Florida households are food insecure—that's more than 680,000 families who lack access to the nutritious foods they need to lead healthy, active lives. As a chef, I take pleasure in feeding people. As a citizen, I find it appalling that people in my community are hungry. Twenty years ago, I joined Share Our Strength's efforts to fight hunger. In 1988, the organization created Taste of the Nation, the nation's premier culinary benefit dedicated to ending childhood hunger in America. I chaired Share Our Strength's first Taste of the Nation event in Miami, and continue to be part of Share Our Strength's national efforts. Since then, we've raised more than $5 million in Florida through Taste of the Nation events in Fort Lauderdale, Miami, Palm Beach and Orlando. Share Our Strength has raised more than $200 million to end childhood hunger nationwide. Recognizing the need for a more coordinated approach to address childhood hunger ...

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