What’s so charming about Calvert County is the many family roots and the rich history planted here. We do not often fret when our children walk to visit a neighborhood friend or bike to the boardwalk or ice cream shop. While that is comforting, we can sometimes overlook the reality many families are facing. Feeding America and the United States Conference of Mayors report that rural hunger (15.4 percent) is now a larger problem than urban hunger (14.9 percent). We might not see the hungry faces as we drive through our county, but they are very real and very present.
Did you know that more than 10,000 Calvert County residents use local food pantries each year?
Our hungry neighbors are not drug abusers, mentally challenged or even unemployed. Our hungry neighbors are the working poor — many working two, sometimes three, jobs to support themselves and their families. A new statistic from our End Hunger in Calvert County partner food pantries shows that people ages 40 to 59 years old are the fastest growing demographic of hunger.
So, how are we working to help them? Our upcoming event, FoodStock 2013, will take place this Saturday, Aug. 17, at the End Hunger Warehouse in Prince Fredrick. During last year’s Foodstock, our volunteers handed out 59,000 pounds of food to more than 600 families in just three hours. This year, we hope to nearly double that number and distribute 100,000 pounds of food to 850 families in three hours.
Fresh produce for this event will be coming from our friends at Farming 4 Hunger and canned/dried foods will be supplied by the Maryland Food Bank.
If you would like to be part of FoodStock 2013, there are two ways you can help. First, you can be a hunger advocate and share our photos and posts. Pictures will be posted all throughout the day on End Hunger’s Facebook (“End Hunger In Calvert County”), Twitter (@_TogetherWeCan) and Instagram (EndHungerCalvert) pages. Sharing posts helps remind our community of the need and how Calvert County is moving to meet it. Secondly, you can make a financial donation online at endhungercalvert.org. All donations are tax deductible and will directly support FoodStock 2013’s operations.
Your donation and help could be what feeds your neighbor. If we all “#givewherewelive,” together, we can end hunger in Calvert County.
Zachary Nycum, Huntingtown