The following is a message from our Executive Director and Co-Founder, Jill Staton Bullard: 2014 marks our 25th year of feeding the Triangle, and I have been doing a lot of reflecting on how this movement started and how wonderful the journey thus far has been.
I had a reason this past month to rummage through 25 years of pictures as we prepared for our Taste of Hope celebration. We’ve come a long way since those early days of recovering food from grocery stores in the back of station wagons. We truly stand on the shoulders of those early volunteers whose determination and hard work were the only fuel that powered what we did to feed hungry people. Today, over 6000 volunteers help us recover or grow over 7 million pounds of food each year. It astounds me that we now serve 64,000 people per month throughout our region.
But, folks, the one thing I have learned is that this is simply not enough. Feeding people who are hungry right now is critical, but only by going after the root causes of hunger can we create a hunger-free and healthy community. So this is the question that haunts me: As a community, how much longer are we going to tolerate 1 in 4 children not knowing where their next meal is coming from? —a fact that has NOT improved over the past 25 years!
Nurturing long term-solutions to poverty and lack of access to fresh healthy food is our mission.
What can all of us do about it? Get educated. Get involved. And a great place to start is with our new website. One of the first things you’ll notice is that all of our programs are organized into “We feed. We teach . We grow.” This illustrates the multiple approaches we are deploying in the community, from nutrition education to urban agriculture to workforce development to creating economic opportunities. Learn about hunger in our community on the Hunger Stats pages. Learn how you can support good policy on our Advocacy page. Learn about all the ways you can volunteer, and what your donated dollar can do.
Our theme for our 25th year is 25 YEARS OF INNOVATION. BUILDING A HUNGER-FREE, HEALTHY COMMUNITY.
Are you willing to join our journey? To learn, to try new approaches? To stand up to the status quo and challenge leadership to make policy that supports the empowerment and self-sufficiency of poor people? Children’s lives depend on us. Can we really afford to wait another 25 years?