Category: Take Action/Serving Your Community

Festival of Children

Festival of ChildrenIt’s time for the Festival of Children, a month long event that runs from September 06 through September 28, 2014 at South Coast Plaza. The event showcases over 70 children’s charities, offers free entertainment and arts & crafts for children of all ages!

Each weekend in September, from 12-4 pm, families can participate in more than 100 events and learn about child-focused charitable groups. Activities include arts and crafts, singing and dance performances, and more.

September is National Child Awareness Month (NCAM). NCAM is an effort led by Festival of Children Foundation to focus the attention of our nation on the most critical issues facing children today. www.festivalofchildren.org

Click here for a complete list of the 2014 Event Schedule. Contact Info: (877) 492-KIDS

wpid-20140901_184112.jpgDuring Festival of Children be sure to walk around the mall and take in the amazing Canstruction displays. Canstruction’s are giant structures all made out of donated cans of food. At the end of the festival all of the cans used in the displays will donated to the Orange County Food Bank.

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Canstruction is using one can of food as a catalyst for change.
One Can® to represent the building blocks of massive sculptures.
One Can® to prove that every act of kindness makes a difference.
Since 1992, Canstruction has contributed over 17.5 million pounds of food to community food banks demonstrating that we can win the fight against hunger.

Canstruction Orange County combines the fun of a design/build competition with an ingenious way to help feed hungry people. Local prominent architectural, engineering, planning, and design firms, and students mentored by these professionals, create phenomenal structures built entirely out of canned food.

Judging occurs in categories such as Best Use of Labels, Structural Ingenuity, Best Meal, and Jurors Favorite and awards are presented at an annual fundraising gala.

The structures go on view to the public at South Coast Plaza each year throughout the month of September in conjunction with the Festival of Children.

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September Jr. Chef Classes at Williams-Sonoma

There’s a great new line up of Jr. Chef Classes at Williams-SonomaWilliams-Sonoma for the month of September.

Classes are FREE with the exception of one class to be held on September 13th. This class gives your kids the opportunity to give back!

A $5.oo donation is requested as Williams-Sonoma has teamed up with Share our Strength , a nonprofit organization dedicated to end childhood hungry.

All proceeds from this class will be donated to Share our Strength.

Jr_chef_SeptmberShow your kids how fun and easy cooking can be: Learn to make delicious recipes,

from main courses to desserts and snacks, with plenty of tasting along the way.

For specific times and more details, find your local store>
• Available at all stores; class times vary by store location.
• Class size is limited – call your local store to register.

Transform a few simple ingredients into a classic, comforting meal. We have the tips, techniques and tools you need to make pasta paired with an authentic sauce. Suitable for ages 9-13.

 

Jr.-Chef_Sept13Share Our Strength is a national nonprofit organization fighting every day to end childhood hunger in America. Join us for this special cookie-decorating event. ($5 donation) – all proceeds will benefit Share Our Strength! All ages are welcome to help us support this great cause.

Everyone knows the most important meal of the day is breakfast. This class will teach you how to make some great grab-and-go breakfasts the whole family will love.  Suitable for ages 9–13.

Want to help prepare dinner? Join us and learn how to make delicious noodle dishes the whole family will love. We’ll create long curly vegetable noodles by spiralizing as well as make a baked noodle dish sure to satisfy. Suitable for ages 9–13.

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10 Reasons to NOT Volunteer with Girl Scouts

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At Girl Scouts, one of the big reasons girls get to do such awesome things and learn so many amazing skills is because we have great volunteers who are willing to give their time and energy to building girls of courage, confidence and character who make the world a better place. So, naturally, we’re always encouraging people to volunteer with us.

But not today.

This time, we’re giving you 10 reasons NOT to volunteer with Girl Scouts. That’s right—we’re going to show you why it would be a terrible idea to join:

click here for gsctx.blogspot.com -10 reasons not volunteer with girl scouts

 

from gsctx.blogspot.com

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Last We Care Wednesday at OC Fair – Help kids in Orange County with School Supplies

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SOS (Share our Selves) is thrilled to be a part of the OC Fair’s We Care Wednesday School Supply Drive, benefiting SOS. A school supply donation of $5 with receipt (required) or more will get you free admission to the fair and one carnival ride.

This summer, Share Our Selves (SOS) will distribute over 2,500 backpacks filled with school supplies to Orange County students from low income families through the 19th Annual Back to School Program. They need your help to meet this goal! Donations of new backpacks, school supplies, hand sanitizer, gift cards for school uniforms, lunch bags, etc. will be gladly accepted.

Please help Share Our Selves send kids back to school with a great start! A positive beginning to the school year can have an important impact on each student’s success.

Underwriting

  • $25 will provide 5 children with a new backpack
  • $50 will provide 10 children with a new backpack
  • $100 will provide 20 children with a new backpack
  • $250 will provide 50 children with a new backpack
  • $500 will provide 100 children with a new backpack

Other ways to Donate

  • Through their website
  • Mail a check made out to Share Our Selves to:
    1550 Superior Avenue
    Costa Mesa, CA 92627

If you are in need of assistance and would like to sign up for this year’s Back to School Program, you can register at SOS in person August 4-22. Please bring your ID and proof of address. You will be given a time to come back and pick up your backpack between August 27-29. Families will receive two backpacks maximum.

For more information on donating supplies or registering for a backpack, please contact:

Veronica Rodarte
949.270.2142
vrodarte@shareourselves.org

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Food Fight!

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Here’s another opportunity to end hungry. If you attend Saddleback Church or if you are near a Saddleback Church location, you can help. During the summer months, 220,000 kids in So Cal will go hungry without the food they normally receive in school. Your food donations can help feed these kids and their families. Bring a donation of nonperishable food items to any of the Saddleback Church campus by August 3 and help us restock the Food Pantry.

LOCATIONS in the USA

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Suggested donation items:

  • Gift Card for Meat
  • Canned Tuna or Chicken
  • Cereal
  • Peanut Butter
  • Pasta
  • Boxed Potatoes
  • Macaroni & Cheese
  • Canned or Dry Beans
  • Rice
  • Canned Fruit
  • Canned Vegetables
  • Canned Soup
  • Canned Ravioli or Chili
  • Canned Tomato Sauce or Gravy
  • Top Ramen Noodles
  • Personal hygiene items

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Feed SoCal

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This Friday, July 25th, ABC7, Vons, ESPN LA 710, and Southern California regional food banks are partnering up for the 3rd Annual Feed SoCal campaign to provide food to the hungry in our communities.

HOW YOU CAN HELP: Go to your local VONS or Pavilions and purchase a pre-filled $5 bag of food, or purchase your own non perishable food items, and leave them in the Feed SoCal box.

WHAT CAN YOU DO TO SUPPORT THIS CALL TO ACTION: Host a food drive in your facility to allow us to collect food for our hungry friends, Place a poster in your store to create awareness, Provide an item, snack or coupon on the day of the event and have an opportunity for a ”Shout Out” during the on-air pieces

HOW TO SIGN UP: Contact Karen Jensen at 805-983-7100 X 135 or kjensen@foodshare.com

The initiative will take place during the month of July and will include the following food banks in Southern California: Los Angeles Regional Food Bank, Second Harvest Food Bank Orange County, Second Harvest Food Bank Inland Empire and FOOD Share Ventura County.

During difficult economic times, one out of every six people in Southern California experiences food insecurity.  The Los Angeles Regional Food Bank serves one million people in Los Angeles County each year, but another 700,000 people need the help.  Second Harvest Food Bank Orange County helps feed more than 240,000 individuals each month, while the Second Harvest Food Bank in the Inland Empire serves more than 350,000 people each month.  FOOD Share Ventura County provides food year-round to more than 74,500 children, adults, seniors and families each month.

As part of the hunger initiative, ABC7, with our regional food bank partners, will be hosting Stuff a Truck events. The Stuff a Truck events will be hosted by ABC7 Eyewitness News Talent from 4:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.  These food drives will give ABC7 viewers an opportunity to participate by donating non-perishable food items, which will be shared with various food banks.

Join us! – Stuff a Truck Events

Friday, July 25 from 4:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.

  • Orange County – Alysha Del Valle at Vons at 185 E. 17th St., Costa Mesa, 92627

  • Inland Empire – Garth Kemp at Mathis Brothers at 4105 Inland Empire Blvd., Ontario, 91764

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Additional donations can be made by viewers by visiting abc7.com to donate to the food bank of their choice or by sending check/cash donation to ABC7’s P.O. Box.

For more information on how to donate or become a sponsor, call Teresa Samaniego (818) 863-7221.

Donate today! Click here

 

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Promoting Literacy for $1.00!

That’s right, $1.00, you can buy books at Piccolo’s Books for just $1.00! They have three locations in Southern California: Lakewood, Long Beach and Lake Forest, with more stores on the horizon.

Piccolo Lewis, the man behind the One Dollar Book Store/Piccolo’s Books was in the book business for years when he decided he wanted to reach out to his community and promote literacy. In 2006, he opened his first store in Long Beach.  The One dollar Bookstore/Piccolo’s Books sells pre-owned books, videos, DVDs and LP records for a $1.00.

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I love going to my local “Big Brand” book store but let’s face it I can make dinner for the entire family for less then the cost of one book. When you have budget to keep, buying a $10.00 book can seem a bit firvolous. We utilize our library on a regular basis but I can buy a book for a dollar at this place. Yeah, I am more than excited about visiting the Lake Forest Store.

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So now let’s get to the root of this story, Piccolo Lewis. Here is a man who makes a difference. Piccolo was was born in Compton and raised in Long Beach. A diagnosis of dyslexia led him to his mission in life: to promote literacy and provide affordable education to all who have desire.

Due to his dedication of promoting literacy, he started Gift of Knowledge, an organization that helps schools, organizations, libraries and orphanages as well as several other projects.

He donates an astounding 1,000 to 60,00 books a week and in the last two years he has donated over 1 million books to schools through out Los Angeles County as well Detroit, Africa, Haiti, Jamaica, the Philippians and Mexico. He is planning on opening two Children’s Libraries in impoverished neighborhoods this year.

In addition to story time for children he also hosts and produces art and entertainment events for the community,  as well as workshops on breaking into the entertainment industry, stage production, educational workshops on writing resume’s and how to land a job, how to sew and self-sustainability. He is determined to help children become productive citizens in their community.

It’s no wonder he’s been honored by Members of Congress, Councilman, the former Mayor of Los Angeles and the LAPD’s  Southeast Division.

What an amazing man, thank you for caring enough to help our youth and our community.

piccololewis

Pictures from Piccolo’s Books Facebook Page

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OC Fair – Summer Starts Here

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Are you ready for some food, carnival rides, carnival games, pig races and exhibits? It’s that  time again, the 2014 OC Fair  will begin this Friday, July 11th and continue through Sunday, Aug. 10. The fair will be open Wednesday-Sunday. Wednesday – Friday: Noon – Midnight and Saturday & Sunday: 10 am – Midnight

Some of the exhibits I’m excited about are the Culinary exhibits, the educational exhibits, contests, Explorium and the garden exhibits in Centennial Farm.

Explorium is an exhibit in which kids from all over  the OC entered the Kids Competitions for Wild & Wonderful Wings, Creative Critters, My Book Buddy, LEGOs, Poster Art, Fair Foodies, Junior Photography, Creative Writing, Drawing and Painting. I can’t wait to see the kids imagination’s at work.

Now, because I we have a budget to keep, I loved reading this article in the OC Registar about How to enjoy the fair without going broke. In addition, I’ve included a list of deals to get into the fair. Some of the fair admission deals even provide an opportunity to help your community through food, book, clothing & school supply drives on We Care Wednesdays.

For me, visiting the fair on the right days provides three very important things: 1) spending time with family 2) learning 3) giving back to your community. Now that’s refining!

Opening Day

FREE Admission & Parking
July 11 (Noon – 1 pm)

Daily

Active Military & Veterans
FREE Active Military & Veterans admission with I.D. Must Show Identification-Not Valid
for Spouses or Dependents
Read & Ride
Read 2 books for 3 carnival rides (ages 5-11)
Click here to download book report form
Submit book reports to the Information Booth @ Centennial Farm for FREE ride tickets
(Valid July 11- August 10, 2014)

Wednesdays

$30 Unlimited Carnival Ride Wristband
(Sold until 5 pm. Valid until 8 pm) – Plus 2 FREE games
We Care Wednesday

We Care Wednesday
Promotion Schedule and Guidelines

FREE admission and 1 carnival ride per person every Wednesday with donation (donation changes weekly).Acceptance of donated items is at the discretion of the OC Fair. Limited to 1 FREE admission and 1 carnival ride per person
Food Drive July 16 (noon – 3 pm)
FREE admission with donation of 5 cans of food
Second Harvest Food Bank Orange County Food Bank
Children’s Book Drive July 23 (noon – 3 pm)
FREE admission with donation of 1 new children’s book
or 3 gently used children’s books
Think Together Early Literacy Program
Clothing Drive July 30 (noon – 3 pm)
FREE admission with donation of 5 new or gently used clothing items
goodwill
School Supply Drive August 6 (noon – 3 pm)
FREE admission with donation of NEW school supplies valued at $5 or more. Receipt required.
Accepted items:

  • pens/pencils/crayons
  • notebooks/notebook paper
  • school backpacks
Share Ourselves

Thursdays

$30 Unlimited Carnival Ride Wristband
(Sold until 5 pm. Valid until 8 pm) – Plus 2 FREE Games
Kids Day
Children 12 & Under FREE Fair admission All day.
Shop ‘Til You Drop
Look for Olivia for special shopping deals with select vendors all day.

Fridays

Seniors Day (60+)
$2 off senior admission
FREE Ferris wheel and merry-go-round rides all day
$2 Taste of Fair Food
Every Friday Noon – 4 pm
Download the $2 Taste of Fair Food list Coming Soon
$2 Rides and $2 Games
Every Friday Noon – 4 pm
Ride with OC Fair Express
Catch the OC Fair Express at one of the eight convenient locations in Orange County with direct bus service to the OC Fair and save!Price: $2 Each Way or $4 Round-Trip to the OC Fair
$3 OC Fair admissionTransit Locations: Anaheim, Fullerton, Huntington Beach, Irvine, Laguna Hills, Orange, Santa Ana, San Juan CapistranoFor more information, visit octa.net/ocfairexpress
Ride with Metrolink
Take Metrolink to the Anaheim Canyon, Santa Ana or Irvine Metrolink station and connect with OCTA’s
OC Fair Express which provides direct bus service to the OC Fair. Just show your valid Metrolink ticket for a FREE ride to the OC Fair. Click linkfor details.

Saturdays & Sundays

Rise & Shine
$3 general admission
(10 am a 11 am)
Discounted tickets are sold until 11 a.m. and must be used by noon on the same day
Off-Site Parking (Weekends Only)
Free parking and shuttle service are available on Saturdays and Sundays from the Experian parking structure located off the Bristol St. exit of the 405 freeway.
Ride with OC Fair Express
Catch the OC Fair Express at one of the eight convenient locations in Orange County with direct bus service to the OC Fair and save!Price: $2 Each Way or $4 Round-Trip to the OC Fair
$3 OC Fair admissionTransit Locations: Anaheim, Fullerton, Huntington Beach, Irvine, Laguna Hills, Orange, Santa Ana, San Juan CapistranoFor more information, visit octa.net/ocfairexpress
Ride with Metrolink
Take Metrolink to the Anaheim Canyon, Santa Ana or Irvine Metrolink station and connect with OCTA’s
OC Fair Express which provides direct bus service to the OC Fair. Just show your valid Metrolink ticket for a FREE ride to the OC Fair. Click linkfor details.

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General Admission and Parking (No deals) are as follows:

Admission::
General (13-59) – $12
Senior (60+) – $7
Youth (6 – 12) – $7
Children 5 and under are FREE

Super Pass:
Buy the exclusive Super Pass and enjoy admission to the 2014 OC Fair for all 23 days! Must be purchased in person at OC Fair box office or online. Includes: admission all 23 days, express entry at all gates, 2-for-1 tickets for select Pacific Amphitheater/Hanger and Action Sports Arena concerts, 20% off OC Fair merchandise, and carnival value book.
General admission: $35
Senior: $28
Youth: $28

Parking Rates:
General parking passenger cars: $10
General parking buses & limos: $20
Pacific Amphitheater VIP: $30
*Parking is CASH ONLY. There is no in-and-out parking privileges.

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“Ella” chemotherapy Barbies

Talk about Taking Action –  Melissa Bumstead did just that when she petitioned Mattel to produce more of the “Ella” Chemo Barbies.

Melissa’s four year old daughter Grace has has a rare form of leukemia and will receive chemotherapy treatments over the next year and half. Children’s Hospital Los Angeles had only six of the barbies to give out and Grace received one of them. Melissa took action by creating a petition to ask Mattel to make enough “Ella” Barbies for all kids with cancer.

Within 3 months she collected 100,000 signatures! Because of Melissa’s action, Mattel has agreed to make more and distribute the “Ella” Barbie to hospitals through out the country beginning in August.

This is her post from her change.org petition site in May 2014:

Victory – Melissa Grace’s Mom: Mattel called…they will annually make more Ella Barbies! That means that every year hospitals and foundations will receive a fresh supply of dolls, so there will be more Ellas for kids with cancer like Grace!

EllaBarbie

Melissa, children around the country will have you to thank for your selfless efforts. Thank you and God bless you for taking action and helping other children!

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The Benefits of Vacation Bible School

We are less then a week away from Vacation Bible School. We attend and volunteer at the VBS through Calvary Chruch located in Santa Ana.

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Calvary Chruch’s VBS is not affiliated with the church that I attend but I love several things about this VBS:

  • It’s FREE 
  • They never turn a child away
  • They help local children without transportation get to and from VBS
  • They are very organized and loving with the children
  • They teach children about giving back

Our VBS starts the day by meeting in the main church, they sing and pray together then head of to their classes where they have a bible based curriculum and then circulate in the campus and do crafts, play games, have a snack and than meet back up in the main church and end their day by singing to the lord and praying together.

They encourage children to give back by contributing through the “Penny Project”.  The kids bring in their “pennies” to fund a project to benefit the work of a missionary family. The kids will learn all about this family and what their pennies will help build or provide. This year they are helping a missionary family that is in the process of opening a new Transition Home in Balti, Moldova for 10 boys. The home will be provide a safe, loving home for boys who are too old for an orphanage but still need protection, school, and job training. The money our children raise through the “penny Project” will help buy comfortable furniture for the home, so it won’t be just a house, but a home. Now, I don’t know about you but I think it’s very impressive that my little girl come’s home understanding what missionary work is and is searching for pennies to help people she’s never meet .

VBS not only helps our children discover and grow closer to Christ, they also make friends and have memories and values to last a lifetime.

As for me, I love that volunteering at VBS works on my heart to witness the body of Christ at work. I volunteer in the craft room, which is non-stop from the moment you walk in. VBS needs a lot of volunteers to make it possible for kids to attend. Everything from donating snacks to helping with parking, helping with sign in’s each day, leading or assisting in a class room, helping in crafts room, kitchen area or music. There are tons of jobs that aren’t even addressed here. Every job is important and helps change the life of a child.

I know, yet another volunteer job and no money. But these volunteer positions that I take on give me more then money ever could. They give me the opportunity to give back to my community, to help someone, to make a difference and to refine my purpose by serving. I hope that my children see that volunteering within your community is needed and how important it is to give back. Volunteering doesn’t take money just your time and effort. Kids need to be taught how to volunteer. You have to be the example.

As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord. – Joshua 24:15

 

Kingdomrock1  kingdomrock2

pictures from last years VBS from OC Register.com

 

 

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Celebrate World Oceans Day

On or around June 8th people around the world celebrate and honor our world’s oceans.  This years theme is“Together we have the power to protect the ocean.”  Join in this weekend with people in communities world wide. This day raises awareness of things that put our oceans in danger like  Ocean acidification, plastics pollution and overfishing.

Hundreds of events are planned to help our oceans by supporting clean energy choices, trash-free coasts and beaches, sustainable seafood, and more.

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Take a selfie for the sea

Take a photo of yourself doing something for the ocean, or making a promise

Help the ocean. We can all do something to protect our ocean! Get out in your community, or make a promise to change something in your life

Take a photo. Show the world how you’re helping your community; with a promise, at your favorite nature spot, or whatever you want!
Share it with the world!Post to Twitter, Facebook, or other social media platform and tag it #WorldOceansDay.

You can make a sign with your promise, or just take a photo of yourself somewhere special! Just mention your promise in the text of your post.

If you’d like help sharing your photo, send an email and we’ll do the rest.

 

Not sure what to promise?

Here’s what other people are doing:

  • I promise to use reusable bags at the grocery store
  • I promise to use a reusable water bottle
  • I promise to not eat meat on Mondays
  • I promise to take shorter showers
  • I promise to take public transportation to school/work once a week
  • I promise to only eat sustainably caught or farmed seafood
  • I promise to shop a thrift store first instead of buying new
  • I promise to unplug my electronic chargers when not using them
  • I promise to turn off all the lights and the heat or A/C when I leave my house
  • I promise to bike instead of drive for at least one errand a week
  • I promise to participate in a litter cleanup
  • I promise to not use toxic pesticides on my garden or lawn

 

The Aquarium of the Pacific will celebrate World Ocean Day with an array of activities ranging from an ocean-themed performance by the Long Beach Chorale in the evening to the Pacific Islander Festival during the day that features special presentations, films, and other educational programming highlighting our blue planet. All of this is in celebration of the largest body of water on the planet, covering 70 percent of Earth and remaining 95 percent unexplored.

Pacific Islander Festival
Festival time: 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Festival cost: General Admission–$28.95 adult (12+), $25.95 senior (62+), $14.95 child (3-11), and free for children under age 3 and Aquarium members.

Long Beach Chorale World Ocean Day Concert
Concert time: 7:00 p.m. – 9:30 p.m.
Concert cost: $30 per adult, $18 for students with ID and children ages 3 to 11. $25 for Aquarium members, $15 for member students and children. Includes Aquarium admission.

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No School = No Food

Summer vacation is just a couple of weeks away for us. I’m planning our schedule and finding events to keep my children busy.

For a lot of parents, the thoughts go so much deeper then that. Some parents are trying to think of ways to keep their children from going hungry during summer break.

In Orange County about 43% of children depend on the free and reduced lunches at school as a majority of their nutrition each day.  So for many children no school = no food.

                                                                      SPSP landing page_0

How can you help?

Raise awareness and refer people: The Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) helps low-income children continue to receive meals when school is out. The program provides children healthy meal options for breakfast and lunch in the summer months at Kids Cafes and other sites. Summer site information varies by state and is available when the school year ends. Call 1-866-3-HUNGRY or 1-877-8-HAMBRE (for Spanish speakers) to find a free, nutritious summer meal site near you.

http://www.fns.usda.gov/sfsp/raise-awareness

Donate or Fundraise:  Start or join a fundraising page or donate funds.

https://www.crowdrise.com/whyhunger

Volunteer:  Volunteers help with basics like transporting food, setting up or cleaning up a site.

http://www.serve.gov/?q=site-page/endhunger-sfsp

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pictures courtesy of http://www.whyhunger.org/

 

 

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