This year, take a break from menu planning and holiday shopping lists to think of and give to those in need. The following accredited food-related organizations, both domestic and international, are working around the clock to raise awareness and end hunger—a worthy cause if we've ever seen one.
Through a network of 202 food banks across the country, Feeding America works to provide food for more than 37 million Americans every year. They offer safe places for children to enjoy meals, mobile pantries that provide groceries free of charge and emergency disaster relief. Hoping to reach out directly to a food bank in your area to volunteer time or make a donation? Browse the site to find a food bank near you.
[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k-RnTT6tkwA&w=493&h=370]Give a man a fish, he eats for a day. Teach a man to fish, he eats for a lifetime. Heifer International operates from a similar perspective—in more ways than one—implementing programs that provide livestock, tools and education to inhabitants of poverty-stricken areas. How can you help this holiday season? Start by taking a look at their gift catalog.
Targeting child hunger in America, the Share Our Strength initiative works to provide free meals to children beyond what they're offered by the public school system. They also focus on educating families about proper nutrition and raising awareness about the severity of domestic hunger.
[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BVtCINe1iKI&w=493&h=277]Need gift basket fillers and stocking stuffers? Look to the folks at Good Spread. With every purchase of an individual packet of their all natural peanut-butter-and-honey combo, Good Spread will make a donation on your behalf. Each donation consists of a packet of hyper-nutritious Ready-to-Use Therapeutic Food (RUTF)—a wonder-substance designed to treat severe acute malnutrition. Good Spread in turn provides these packets to MANA, an organization that distributes RUTF to impoverished areas around the world.
Page 2 of 2 - [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UQmR4jLxffg&w=493&h=277]The Meals On Wheels Association of America has worked tirelessly for more than 50 years to address senior hunger by delivering meals to homebound seniors and hosting regular meal services for millions each and every day. This holiday season, sign up to deliver a round of meals, or donate on behalf of your family to fund meals.
[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cwjJsrcihEc&w=492&h=277]Oxfam's GROW campaign works to support more sustainable food-growing practices worldwide by protecting the rights of farmers and their access to resources, in turn providing support to the surrounding communities.
A humanitarian organization working towards an end to global hunger, Action Against Hunger oversees programs worldwide aimed towards improved food security, sanitation and nutrition. The team at AAH are offering up perfect opportunities to give this season, with a catalog of life-saving gifts including livestock, water filters and emergency food to give in honor of loved ones on your list.
[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MJfffz6qp20&w=493&h=277]The One Acre Fund provides support to a network of smallholding farmers in Africa. With resources and training provided by the Fund, farmers improve their harvests, thus pulling themselves out of poverty and working to eradicate the same level of poverty and hunger in their neighbors.
This article originally appeared as on Relish