Did you know that June is fresh fruits and vegetables month? That’s great if you can afford them. However, they are a luxury for people who struggle to provide even just the basic necessities for their families. Many families rely on their local food banks as a regular supplemental food source. And of those families, 84 percent of households with children report purchasing the cheapest food available, knowing it wasn’t the healthiest option, in order to provide enough food for their family.
And summertime is probably when food banks need your help the most. That’s because children are on break from school and their families have to provide the meals that they normally would get through school meal programs. Six out of seven low-income kids who eat a free or reduced-price school lunch do not get free meals during the summer because they don’t participate in summer meal programs.
So what can you do to help? Does this mean you should go out and buy a bunch of fruits and vegetables to donate to your local food bank? Or maybe donate some extra produce from your home garden? No. The best way that you can help families in need is to donate money to your local food banks. Food banks have agreements or partnerships with distributors/suppliers so that they are able to stretch your donation dollars to purchase more items, usually in bulk. For example, a one-dollar donation—to a food bank hub like Feeding America—can provide 11 meals to families in need. And 68 percent of the foods distributed are healthy foods that align with the USDA Dietary Guidelines.
At Windermere Real Estate, our offices support local food banks through grants from the Windermere Foundation. Here are just a few of the food banks that we have supported over the past year: Idaho Foodbank, Columbia Pacific Food Bank, St. Vincent de Paul Food Bank, Marysville Community Food Bank, The People’s Pantry, Republic, and Maple Valley Food Bank & Emergency Services.
If you’d like to help, consider making a donation to the Windermere Foundation or donating directly to your local food bank or food pantry.
To learn more about the Windermere Foundation, visit http://www.windermere.com/foundation.
Sources: feedingamerica.org, nokidhungry.org