Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Kids Against Hunger

Our town has a food packaging satellite for Kids Against Hunger and my kids couldn't be happier.

They describe the time they spend there as rewarding and fun. If you aren't familiar with it, this page explains what Kids Against Hunger, or KAH, is. Volunteers measure, pour and bag a combination of rice, soy, vitamins/flavoring and vegetables, and put together nutritious meals-in-a-bag to be shipped all over the world.

The girls have been only a handful of times, but we hope to make it a much more regular activity. This small commitment of time is a very real way to help starving children.

How the components of the bags came together is described on this page, which gives more details about the man who started KAH, Richard Proudfit.

An excerpt:
His breakthrough came when he met with several food industry executives in Minnesota and asked the simple question, ‘What would be the ideal food for starving children?” The executives put their food scientists to work and began testing various formulations of a highly nutritious dehydrated food package. Richard tells the story of testing one of the early formulations of the food with Indian children who lived on the Calcutta city dump (not near, but on the dump). The children had trouble keeping the food down because it was too rich for their starved bodies.

From this experience and others, the formulation was refined so that it could fill the basic nutritional needs of virtually any child while accommodating the broad range of cultural tastes and religious prohibitions found around the world. The beauty of the food formulation is its simplicity. It is made from four readily available, dry ingredients (rice, soy beans, vegetables, and a vitamin-mineral mixture) that are easy to package, keep for long periods, and requires only boiling with water to prepare. Despite the simplicity of the food’s content, it is a nutritionally complex and well balanced meal.
By American standards, our family is merely middle-class. We live in a modest home, drive old cars, and get hugely excited about things like a long drive to Pennsylvania. But, I know that in comparison to others around the world, we are obscenely rich. I keep trying to find ways to teach that truth to my children, and to reinforce that message to myself. Kids Against Hunger is a simple and helpful way to teach the lesson, to give a little of ourselves, and to know that we're a concrete part of a solution to a huge problem.

Here's a list of current satellite locations for KAH. Is your town on it? If it is, spread the word, and if you don't see your town on the list ... well, you know what I'm thinking.


Heather said...

That looks wonderful, thank you! I looked up my state and there is one quite far. I'll have to look into how new satellites are opened.

Beck said...

For some mysterious reason, The Girl wants to go to Pennsylvania more than ANYTHING. WHY?
That's a wonderful charity! I'm going to approach one of our local church groups with that idea, too.

Margaret Mary Myers said...


What a neat thing!

I actually posted in to tell you that I tagged you for the Middle Name Meme, if you are interested (if you haven't already done it; I can't remember).


Margaret Mary

Jennifer said...

Cool program! I like how there is active participation for the kids with the final product.