Thursday, March 14, 2013

A sign

Someone is trying to tell me that I need to help feed others.

3 Saturdays ago I signed up for a community garden with my kids.  We are super excited because I'm hoping this community garden area will provide a place I can grow vegetables without worrying about critters eating them up.  On the form to sign up for the garden plot you could sign up to donate a row of your garden to the local Ecumenical Food Bank.  This food bank will gladly except our fresh vegetables for those in our neighborhoods who don't have the resources to buy food/vegetables. 
 
The next day at church the director for the Free Lunch Program in Iowa City came and spoke about her program and a new initiative 1105 Project.  I posted on this earlier.  I listened to her talk about how they provide coffee, PB&J sandwiches in the morning and lunch starts at 10 a.m. and after 1pm you can box up any leftovers for take home meals. The meals are prepared and served by volunteers and much of the food is donated or bought at discounted price. No questions asked- everyone who walks through the door get a free lunch.  People aren't just homeless eating their lunch at the Free Lunch Program- they are many times people who are trying to just get by and this free meal is a few more dollars in their pockets.  I've wanted to volunteer at the program, but haven't been able to due to our church provides meals on a Friday every month and children can only volunteer when older- so add this on my "to do list" once my youngest starts kindergarten this fall.
 
Then about a week later I was invited to a meeting at two friends of mine house about the mobile food pack unit that is coming to Iowa City June 7 and 8th.  The initiative is called Feed My Starving Children. Feed My Starving Children is a non-profit Christian organization committed to feeding God’s children hungry in body and spirit. The approach is simple: children and adults hand-pack meals specifically formulated for malnourished children, and they ship the meals to nearly 70 countries around the world. The group brings pretty much everything needed to to help 500 volunteers pack meals for those in need over a two day period.  It is a great initiative because you don't have to give money, but can also give of your time and their volunteer age is 5 years of age and older.  Children don hair nets and are put on the production line to help package meals for those less fortunate.  The organization is also looking for donations ($22,000 raised= 200,000 meals).  The breakdown of how your money is used is amazing: 22cents/day= one meal, $80 feeds a child for one year, $400 feeds a family of five. 
Here is contact info for the event:http://www.fundraising.fmsc.org/iowacity 
Volunteer shifts will be organized in a month or so.  A great way to get kids involved in making a difference.

Then my church circle got involved in NAMI walk ( https://securewalks.nami.org/registrant/LoginRegister.aspx?EventID=100547&LangPref=en-CA&Referrer=http%3a%2f%2fnamiwalks.org%2fcontent%2fhome) - It is a long one because it takes you directly to the Iowa City/Johnson county walk.  One of the major ways our circle was asked to help- make cookies- lots of cookies for walkers.  So I'll be baking some cookies for another great cause "Changing Minds One Step at a time". 

Last Sunday I talked to a friend whose father in-law had a stroke which has left him very debilitated.  The family is trying to keep him at home and so people have been asked to help with meals, groceries, errands etc.  So again food comes into play.

The same Sunday I found out about needing to bake cookies for NAMI our family signed up to walk the Crop Walk.  I remember walking in the Crop Walk as a kid.  Those Big Stop Sign Stickers stating "Stop Hunger".  A couple of families signing up asked if the walk would happen if it rained that day- I loved the answer the sign up leader for the event had- "The kids we are walking for have to walk rain/shine to get there food everyday so we will walk in the same way".

Here is the info for that walk:
Walk Day location: Chauncey Swan Park, next to the parking garage where the Farmers' Market is held.
Arrive early to register, get inspired, and hand in your envelopes. Step-off: 1:30 p.m.

Contact:
Karen Casavant,
karenc@eng.uiowa.edu

 
 Every dollar raised for our CROP Hunger Walk will be increased this year! The Feinstein Foundation (www.feinsteinfoundation.org) will divide $1 million among hunger-fighting agencies that raise funds during March and April. So the more funds we raise from March 1 to April 30, the more we'll receive. Every dollar counts even more!

CROP Hunger Walks help children and families worldwide – and here in the U.S. – to have food for today, while building for a better tomorrow.  Our local efforts are making a huge difference... and you are part of it!

Then I opened one of my recent journals and read an article about "food insecurity".  This term means " the lack of access to enough food to fully meet basic nutritional needs at all times because of lack of resources." Contemporary Pediatrics page 10
The article gave the following numbers to scare me into thinking I further need to help get "food" to others: 2010- 6.2 million suburban households were food insecure, and 2.3 million at very low food security.  The article again reminded me that many of those food insecure are around us on a daily basis and you just never know who they are.  I love food and just can't imagine not having food to eat or not being able to give my children enough food for them to feel full. 

O.K. so I'm a sign person.  Like if I hear an author's name over and over again I take it as a "sign" I'm suppose to pick up that author's book(s) and read.  When I dream about a long lost friend or family member I take it as a "sign" I need to call them or email them.  So the "sign"
 of late is I need to help feed others in some way or another. 

I've enclosed all the links above for those that live in the area or those who want to donate from afar via internet- those who are feeling it is a "sign" to get involved in "feeding" others. 

Lastly, Do You Believe in Signs? 
 
  

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