Mobilizing An Industry to Fight Hunger
1 in 6 Americans, including 17 million children, relied on emergency food assistance in 2011. This is an increase of 48% since 2006. With times getting tougher, as well as a growing financial burden on our communities, these numbers are dramatically increasing.
1 in 2 children living in Washington D.C. do not have enough food to eat. Here I was, standing in the capital of the wealthiest nation on the planet, only to learn that 50% of the city’s children would go home tonight without a meal for dinner. The face of hunger has changed. Never before have so many people been driven to our communities’ food banks to find relief. How is it that in America, the land of the free and home of the brave, we cannot feed our own children?
I wish I could tell you that these are just a sampling of statistics from one specific community, but I can’t. I drove across America for 28 days last spring to learn about how hunger was affecting our communities, and everywhere I went there was more of the same. 1 in 4 people in Delaware rely on the food bank for assistance. 1.5 million New Yorkers depend on soup kitchens and pantries. 70% of households in San Diego are at risk of being food insecure.
While some problems demand complex solutions, budget talks, and economic growth models, tackling our nation’s hunger problem relies on one simple equation: get excess food to those who need it. For me the answer seemed simple. My father and I had seen tons of perfectly good food go to waste while running our family’s 90-year-old moving company. Amidst the backdrop of a great recession and rising unemployment, we could no longer sit idly by and watch as food was dragged to the curb while people were moving.
In 2009, we began to ask customers to set aside any unopened, non-perishable food they weren’t taking with them on their move, and we would bring it to the local food bank. In one month, we had collected more than 300 lbs. of food that would have ended up in the dump. This was enough food to provide over 230 meals to those in need. The idea of Move For Hunger was born: if our little moving company could collect 300 lbs of food in just one month, imagine what the thousands of movers across the nation could accomplish.
It is now 2012, and Move For Hunger has partnered with over 340 relocation companies in 43 states. Together, more than 485,000 lbs. of food has made it to local food banks throughout the country, without the food banks having to lift a finger or spend a dime. Our movers go into people’s homes armed with a local hunger statistic, educating their clients about the growing need in their own community while providing a box to collect any non-perishable food items not going with them on the move. Move For Hunger is literally bringing the food drive into the homes of thousands of individuals each day.
For every dollar the food banks don’t need to spend on drivers, trucks and gasoline, they can provide up to 8 meals for those in need. We have taken an existing network of transportation companies and mobilized them for change. For our movers, it is a great opportunity to give back to the communities in which they serve. It’s a win-win!
More About This Charity
Small Charity of the Year, Hunger and Poverty Relief
Move for Hunger
Move For Hunger was established to strengthen the efforts of our communities’ food banks, while actively engaging in America’s hunger fight. By using our unique knowledge and experience, Move For Hunger leverages its existing national network of relocation companies to create one of the nation’s largest, year-round service programs.
- This Achievement raised $351,700
- This charity raised $210,000 in the past year
- This Achievement helped 375,000 people
- This charity helped 320,000 people in the past year
- 330 relocation companies and 120 real estate agents have educated 500,000 individuals and delivered over 485,000 lbs of food to US food banks