Annual event focusing on summer nutrition
ALEXANDRIA, VA (June 19, 2018) – From providing nutritious meals to food-insecure families to sorting and distributing books and supplies to under-resourced schools, tens of thousands of volunteers are joining with United Way to make their communities stronger through Day of Action. The annual event, held on or around June 21, inspires and engages people to tackle specific challenges in their communities and introduce long-term solutions. This year’s global focus is on summer nutrition.
While volunteers in 19 countries are galvanizing around important issues, over 70 United Way leaders will be advocating on Capitol Hill for policies that support the health, education and financial stability of every person in every community. Chief among their concerns is protecting the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program (SNAP), the nation’s largest anti-hunger program, which is facing serious cuts in proposed legislation.
“In all corners of the world, people want to do their part to strengthen their communities,” said Brian Gallagher, President and CEO, United Way Worldwide. “Day of Action is a tremendous opportunity for us to harness the passion and work ethic of United Way’s volunteers to help fuel our mission to improve lives. We are grateful to all our volunteers and partners who are rolling up their sleeves this year to make a difference in their communities.”
In 2017, tens of thousands of volunteers around the world joined more than 450 United Ways from 19 countries to create positive change for themselves, their families and their communities. United Way’s partnership with more than 60 global corporations is essential to creating that impact. With support from Kellogg Company, United Way will collaborate with anti-hunger nonprofits to expand their summer meal programs that offer free and nutritious meals to kids and teens.
“Doing our part to help feed people in need has long been a priority at Kellogg. As a leading global food company, we’re pleased to partner with United Way to help address the important issue of food security. We’re especially proud to support these summer feeding programs that make such a difference in the lives of young people and their families,” said Kris Charles, Senior Vice President, Global Corporate Affairs, Kellogg Company.
Summer is a critical time for children’s academic and physical well-being, but in too many communities, kids are falling behind and going hungry during the summer months. For some kids from low-wage families, summer often means the loss of regular breakfasts and lunches. According to the Food Research and Action Center’s 2017 Hunger Doesn’t Take A Vacation report one out of seven low-income kids who eat a free or reduced-price school lunch during the academic year aren’t reached by summer feeding programs. United Ways are ensuring that kids have access to the same nutritious meals during the summer. For example:
- United Way of Western Connecticut (Stamford, CT) will be partnering with End Hunger CT to promote access to summer meals in the greater Danbury community. Volunteers will be canvassing and distributing door hangers to inform the community, then setting up, planning and running activities at a community wide "block party." Activities will include creation and distribution of literacy kits and snack packs to children.
- United Way of the Inland Valleys (Riverside, CA) will pack 100,000 dry meals to be distributed to local food banks, pantries, and organizations that support the community. There will be two separate locations, in Riverside and Temecula in order to mobilize hundreds of volunteers from families and corporations who will ultimately feed thousands of people in western Riverside County.
- Heart of West Michigan United Way (Grand Rapids, MI) At Food from the Heart, 1,000 volunteers will work together to create 200,000 healthy meal packages. Partnering with Feeding America West Michigan, the meals will be distributed to dozens of food pantries and nonprofit agencies throughout Kent County that will get them in the hands of local families who are experiencing food insecurity.
- United Way Regina (Regina, Canada) will rally volunteers to prepare 45 Food Bundles for students at a local alternative school who are in need of summer meals. The healthy food packages will be delivered to students and families before schools are out for the summer.
To see advocacy in action on Capitol Hill, follow @UnitedWay on Instagram on June 21.
About United Way
United Way fights for the health, education and financial stability of every person in every community. Supported by 2.9 million volunteers, 9.8 million donors worldwide and $4.7 billion raised every year, United Way is the world’s largest privately-funded nonprofit. We’re engaged in 1,800 communities across more than 40 countries and territories worldwide to create sustainable solutions to the challenges facing our communities. United Way partners include global, national and local businesses, nonprofits, government, civic and faith-based organizations, along with educators, labor leaders, health providers, senior citizens, students and more. For more information about United Way, please visit UnitedWay.org. Follow us on Twitter: @UnitedWay and #LiveUnited.
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