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The Gift of a Meal

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Our guest blogger today is Elizabeth Rowan Chandler, Director of Communications at Feeding America

Looking back, I think it was something my grandmother said to me years ago that led me to join the hunger-relief movement.

One year, I was helping my grandmother, Anne, peel chestnuts for her traditional Thanksgiving stuffing, when she paused suddenly to gesture over the many dishes of potatoes, green beans and casseroles she’d spent days preparing. “Do you know why I enjoy cooking all of this for my family?” she asked. It was a lot of work, but Anne always seemed to do it with pleasure. She explained, “When you give someone something to eat, you give them strength, you give them comfort, and you let them know that someone cares for them. That’s what food does for a person.”

Anne understood what it meant to always have enough food in the house — to always know that there would be dinner or breakfast or something to offer a hungry guest. Having grown up in poverty, she also knew too well what it felt like to have none.

Sadly, too many families struggle to put enough food on the table — not just during the holidays, but every day of the year. Right here in America, more than 50 million people face hunger. And Feeding America research shows that hunger exists in every county in the nation — even in the wealthiest. To help people facing hunger, Feeding America and its nationwide network of food banks provide meals to 37 million people in need each year, educate the public about the issue of hunger, and advocate for legislation that protects low-income families from going hungry.

With so many people facing hunger, Feeding America is fortunate to be participating in Thanks for Giving, the Martha Stewart Living campaign to fight hunger in America. Martha Stewart Living will award cash prizes to the top three hunger-relief organizations that raise the most money through Crowdrise, a platform that helps charities raise funds to support their work. But it’s not just about winning the prize — the goal is to raise as much money as possible to help dozens of organizations feed people this holiday season and beyond.

When we provide people with food, we provide them with so much more. This holiday season, help feed people in your community and across the nation. Make a donation through the Thanks for Giving initiative or visit Feeding America to learn about other ways you can help fight hunger. Together, we can ensure that people have enough to eat this holiday season and all year long.

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