You all asked and I am so excited to welcome you to the FIRST Nonprofit Spotlight.
Tomorrow - March 22 - Grand Rapids will collectively “Go Orange” to raise awareness for the 1 in 5 local children facing challenges with hunger.
It is shocking to me to count off five children I know and to think that (statistically) one of them is facing hunger. I know that I get a bit ornery when I miss a meal, but imagine what that means for a child on a daily basis working through that while trying to learn, pay attention, participate, sit still and grow in a classroom.
If you know of Kids Food Basket, it’s most likely because of their Flagship Program, the Sack Suppers, where brightly decorated brown bags are distributed to school children with nutritious items for them to take home. Volunteers donate food, funds, and time to make this program what it’s grown to today.
Interesting Fact: It takes 260 volunteers on site every weekday to run this program.
Hits you in the feels fact: KFB is currently serving 47 local schools. 30 ADDITIONAL schools with immediate needs are currently on the waiting list.
So while you may know about the sack suppers, KFB is also working hard in two other areas - Learning and Growing in the Community.
They have been working behind the scenes to engage and empower students to understanding the impact of poverty and issues related to hunger by presenting and enlisting elementary schools around the area to partner with their mission.
Quick story here: My daughter is in elementary school and had no idea how much I appreciate the work that Kids Food Basket does in our community. She attended a presentation at her school and came home armed with a fierce determination and little orange shopping list of items that we needed to buy to be used in the KFB sack suppers. She also has reminded me nearly every day that tomorrow we will all be “going orange” to the point where she picked out my husband’s outfit for tomorrow.
But she is not alone. Her entire school is ready to tackle hunger for kids just like her, who may be as close as our neighbor.
I’ve been watching the growth of Kids Food Basket over the last 4 years and have been quietly impressed with how a simple sack supper can bring so many people together. Because of this growth, Kids Food Basket recently announced they acquired 14 acres near Leonard to expand to a new facility, raise a barn and greenhouse and use just under 10 acres to grow produce year round to be included in the sack suppers and distributed to other Food Based organizations around town.
Bottom Line- Kids Food Basket is crushing local childhood hunger with your help. But it takes your help.
Join me and my family tomorrow, March 22nd in going orange to raise awareness for the local childhood hunger crises.
Also, keep an eye on the Blue Bridge that evening as it also lights up orange to support the mission.