Join me for the 4th annual Fighting Poverty with Faith mobilization this week by taking the Food Stamp Challenge from Thursday, October 27th through Thursday November 3rd. The challenge is to limit yourself to a food budget of $31.50/week, $4.50/day or $1.50/meal. This is the average amount allotted a person who qualifies to receive food stamps.
Almost 46 million or 15% of Americans live on food stamps or SNAP. I imagine that many are hungry, undernourished and live food insecure lives. Food insecurity exists when the availability of nutritionally adequate and safe foods or the ability to acquire acceptable foods in socially acceptable ways is limited or uncertain.
Living on food stamps forces people to make unhealthy food choices (cheap carbs rather than more expensive fresh fruits and veggies). Poor food choices often lead to serious health problems like obesity, diabetes and high blood pressure. How does this affect learning in schools and productivity in the workplace?
I don’t need to live on SNAP or food stamps. By making this choice for just one week and inviting others to join, I hope to raise awareness and advocate for those who have no choice. How can we change a food system that is clearly not working for 15% of our population? How do we create food security or having enough food to lead an active, healthy life where food insecurity presently exists? How do we right what is not just?
Experience, even as brief as a week can raise awareness and lead to advocacy. Please join me and invite others to take the Food Stamp Challenge this week!
Babylonian Talmud, Hagigah 12b
Rabbi Yossi said: Alas for people who see but know not what they see and for people who stand but know not on what they stand.