I’m taking the hunger challenge. Actually, my family is taking the hunger challenge. Well, my family minus one.
This September Food Outreach is holding it’s 4th Annual Hunger Challenge to raise money and awareness about the unique nutritional needs and food insecurity of their clients.
Food Outreach has challenged my family to spend the weekly SNAP/USDA Food Stamp budget on all food purchases during any seven days in the month of September. Our week begins this upcoming Monday, September 26, 2011.
The average food allotment is $29/week or a little over $4/day.
This $29 is the allotment based on the most recent Missouri SNAP guidelines. It is per person. Can you imagine trying to eat on only $4 a day. Breakfast, lunch and dinner. There wouldn’t be much for snacks. And no extra perks. I’m thinking that cup of coffee I covet might not be able to be budgeted in. I’m still crunching numbers.
My family of 7 will be missing a participant, so we are going with a family of 6 for the week.
Our budget is $168. 3 Meals a day. For 7 Days. For 6 People.
Running the numbers through the system, our budget for the week is $168. Can I really feed five teenage kids and myself on $168 a week? And it’s not just that easy. The real challenge is eating as nutritiously as we can to better understand the difficulties of Food Outreach clients.
The meals need to be as nutritious as possible.
Next week I will be blogging about our experience both here on my blog as well as here at the Food Outreach Blog with the other participants.
Here’s a little more about Food Outreach and why we are doing this challenge:
Established in 1988, Food Outreach continues to be the only nonprofit organization in the greater St. Louis area whose focus is to provide comprehensive nutritional support to low-income individuals of all
ages battling either cancer or HIV/AIDS. The nutritional needs of people diagnosed with these diseases are very specific, including increased protein intake and important micronutrients. On average, a Food Outreach client is eligible for a $29/week “food stamp” allotment, certainly not enough to purchase the nutritious foods that can improve their treatment outcomes. With nutritional support from Food Outreach, clients are provided the following services:
- Two Nutritious Meals a day
- Ongoing Dietetic Counseling
- Freshly prepared frozen meals
- Nutritional Supplements
- Cooking and Nutrition Classes
- Congregate lunch program
- Meal home delivery
- HIV/AIDS or Cancer Nutrition Counseling
Our Hunger Challenge will help raise more support and funding for the services our organization provides to clients. This year, it is our goal to collect 3,000 cans to help maintain our food supply for the upcoming year. Dollars raised will be counted as $1 per can. We appreciate any support you can give us, and encourage you to pass this information along to friends, family members, and coworkers that can lend a hand.
I hope you will follow along in our journey both here and on their blog. I’m both excited and nervous. And really happy I have a large family because I can stretch that $168 a lot further since I cook everything from scratch. Can you imagine me trying to eat 3 square meals a day on $29.00 for a week?