In 2013, 49.1 million Americans lived in food-insecure households, including 15.8 million children. That means that 1 in 5 children in America doesn’t have enough to eat. Here’s how parents can help their kids understand the issues of hunger in America.
Many of us don’t go to bed hungry, and it’s all too easy to take for granted that we have enough nutritious food to feed our own children. A lot of our kids don’t know what it’s like to go to school on an empty stomach, which is why we wanted to educate the Hatch kids on what food-insecure households face each and every day and how the average cost to feed a person is $36.50. Through a partnership with Unilever Project Sunlight, we sent the Hatchlings to a local market with this amount of money and instructed them to buy enough groceries to feed a child for a week, balancing their menu with guidelines using the Healthy Eating Plate, comprised of the four food groups.
Even the youngest kids are capable of understanding that selecting nutrient-rich foods on a limited budget can be a difficult task and that we all need to do our part to make sure no child goes to bed with an empty stomach. As the Hatchling says in the video: “Don’t use the word ‘starving’ lightly, because there’s a lot of people who are actually starving.” The following activity can be done at a local grocery store with your own children or with students to help showcase the difficult choices people have to make due to budget and to empower these kids to make a positive impact on their community by sharing a meal.
Launched in November of 2013, Unilever Project Sunlight is a sustainable initiative focused on encouraging people to create a brighter future for our children. Unilever Project Sunlight believes that even the smallest act — whether it’s sharing a meal, donating time or money or volunteering — can make a difference when multiplied over time and can help build a brighter future for children. Go to ProjectSunlight.us to learn more about how to share a meal to end child hunger, or join the conversation on Twitter using #ShareAMeal.