12/15/10 — International Stop Hunger Now meal-packaging project looking for local help

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International Stop Hunger Now meal-packaging project looking for local help

By From staff reports
Published in News on December 15, 2010 1:46 PM

St. Francis Episcopal Church is combining efforts with Stop Hunger Now, a non-profit international relief organization established in 1998 with headquarters in Raleigh, to raise awareness of the problem of worldwide hunger.

In developing countries, more than 10 million children under age 5 die each year from malnutrition. In fact, every six seconds a child dies from a hunger-related cause, according to Stop Hunger Now, which has a meal packaging program using volunteers who pack dehydrated, high protein, and highly nutritious meals for feeding programs in schools and orphanages in developing countries worldwide.

These packaging programs are located in Goldsboro, Raleigh, Goldsboro and Charlotte; in Lynchburg, South Hill, Hampton Roads, and Richmond, Va.; in Jackson, Miss.; Phoenix, Ariz.; Philadelphia, Pa.; Atlanta and Durban, South Africa.

St. Francis in Goldsboro is making available Advent materials with the theme of "The Gift of Life," which involve a day-by-day awareness of and commitment to this cause. Every family member is asked to participate, usually at mealtime, by donating small amounts of money.

For example, one calendar item reminds us that pet owners in the United States spend $18 billion on pet food. "When you feed your pet today, also feed a child by adding 25 cents to your collection bag." Another entry states: "Buy six hot meals by adding $1.50 to your bag" and another, "For every card you receive this week, add 25 cents to your bag."

Eradicating hunger has several benefits: it sustains the workforce, promotes gender equality, boosts education rates, heals weakened communities, reduces child mortality, and improves maternal health.

Families interested in the Advent materials may access them from www.stfrancis goldsboro.org or from www.stop hungernow.org. The community is invited to a food packaging party on Saturday, Feb. 12 at the Arts Council Building at 10 a.m., to make a difference in the lives of hungry families as part of Wayne County Reads.

The group is looking for volunteers to help pack food kits for Afghanistan on Saturday, Feb. 12 from 10 a.m. until noon, but organizers said they need to hear from individuals or groups sooner than February willing to donate time or money.

For more information, call 735-9090.