This is the mission of Harvesters: to feed hungry people today and work to end hunger tomorrow. As the Kansas City area’s only food bank, Harvesters has served our community since 1979 by
- collecting food and household products,
- distributing products and providing nutrition services, and
- offering leadership to increase awareness and generate solutions to alleviate hunger.
The work of Harvesters is not limited to the Kansas City metro area; rather, it serves twenty-six surrounding counties in eastern Kansas and western Missouri through more than 620 not-for-profit agencies. The numbers of people in need are staggering: by some estimations, as many as 66,000 of our neighbors – from those living next door to those we work with – do not have access to the food they need.
In this economy, there are fewer things that one dollar can buy: a bottle of shampoo, a song from iTunes, lip gloss … but thanks to the efficiency that comes from their central distribution model, Harvesters is able to feed five people for just $1. That’s it! Their view toward addressing hunger-related issues focuses on four initiatives which are central to everything that they do: the Childhood Hunger Initiative, the Feeding Families Initiative, the Healthy Eating Initiative, and the Senior Feeding Initiative. (You can read more about these initiatives by clicking here.)
This year, The Kansas City Star is teaming up with Harvesters on their KC Challenge: Childhood Hunger 2013 initiative to provide children with dependable access to nutritious food. According to the Harvesters website:
- one in five children in Kansas and Missouri do not have access to enough nutritious food to be healthy.
- Thirty-seven percent of those fed by Harvesters – more than 26,000 mouths a week – are children.
- An estimated 16.2 million pounds of food went to feed children under age 18 last year alone.
Every Sunday through December 15, volunteers can sign up to work alongside Star employees to help make a difference in the lives of hungry children in our community by serving at the Harvesters food bank. To participate in this initiative, email [email protected] or call 816-929-3090.
Now more than ever, Harvesters needs our help. In addition to the Childhood Hunger initiative, there are several other ways for you to get involved:
- Give money: As mentioned, Harvesters can turn a $1 donation into five meals for those in need. Click here to explore the many options for donating money directly to Harvesters.
- Give time: Did you know that Harvesters accepts volunteers as young as six years old? What a great way to teach your young ones to have a spirit of giving – especially during the holiday season! Click here for details on volunteer opportunities through Harvesters.
- Give food: Every donation makes a difference – both corporate and individual. Click here to learn more about what and where to donate food in your area.
What better time to get involved with meeting the needs of those in our community than right now! You’ll be glad you did.