Posts Tagged ‘ No Kid Hungry ’

Sweet Charity

Thursday, May 16th, 2013


No matter how health-conscious you are or what diet you’re on, there are times when you just can’t pass on dessert.

When it comes to Sandra Lee’s pineapple-passion-fruit cupcakes, Guy Fieri’s caramel apple bread pudding, and Buddy Valastro’s Italian butter cookies, I can’t think of a single reason to say no.

On May 1, I perused the World’s Largest Bake Sale at Grand Central Station, sampling sweets, meeting local bakers, but most importantly, learning about child hunger in America.

Sponsored by the Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry campaign, the bake sale raised both money for the cause and awareness for the more than 16 million children affected by hunger in America.

I chatted with of New York City’s best bakers and browsed their selection of champagne cupcakes, pistachio-cherry scones, and peanut-butter-strawberry-jam doughnuts. All sweets were sold for $5, the proceeds from which were put toward the campaign.

Bake sale host Sandra Lee whipped up her favorite strawberry shortcake and banana split cupcakes for the event, and spoke to me about the urgency of the child hunger epidemic.

“Some working moms are going home with one check, paying rent, and wondering how they are going to feed their kids. Sometimes they have to choose between paying bills and food,” she said. “It shouldn’t be that way in America.”

Buddy Valastro, the “Cake Boss,” said that as a baker and a father, he just had to be part of the event. He also shared with me a personal story about his family history.

“My dad grew up in Sicily and I remember him telling stories of going to bed hungry, after sharing one plate with his family,” he said. “It really puts life in perspective. This is about more than raising money, it’s about saying, ‘Hey, America, this is happening!’”

Ty Pennington, former host of Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, expressed a personal connection to the cause and donated a colorful, handmade bake sale stand for the Share Our Strength Auction.

“I may not have a child of my own, per se, but it is staggering to hear that one in five kids goes hungry,” he said. “It really opens your eyes about not wasting as much and makes you think about what we can do to make sure they are fed.”

The Share Our Strength Auction for No Kid Hungry runs through May 31 and features items donated by food masters like Martha Stewart and Emeril Lagasse. This is your chance to take a class in the Cake Boss’s kitchen, dig in to Bobby Flay’s signature Southwestern dishes, or learn to swirl icing like New York’s iconic Magnolia Bakery.

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A (Phone) Call to Help Hungry Children

Tuesday, March 5th, 2013

It’s tough to reason with my kids when they’re hungry. They can’t focus, and they melt down fast. This is what I was thinking last week when I attended a press briefing by Share Our Strength, the hunger organization that founded the No Kid Hungry campaign. No Kid Hungry, along with Deloitte, just released a study with some alarming facts about our country’s school breakfast program. Did you know that 21 million low-income children around the country eat a free (or reduced-price) lunch–but only about 11 million of those same kids eat school breakfast? And yet they come to their classroom each morning famished, and because of that, they may also be exhausted, irritable, anxious, and easily distracted. Makes you really feel for the students themselves, not to mention the teachers whose jobs are that much harder in those circumstances. Which leads me to another disturbing stat: More than 60 percent of K-8 public school teachers said they had children in their classrooms who regularly came to school hungry because there wasn’t enough to eat at home.

No Kid Hungry has among its supporters the actor Jeff Bridges, who has been fighting to end hunger for 30 years, in large part through his own organization, End Hunger Network. At last week’s event he posed this question: “We have to look into our own souls. What are we willing to do that’s not just a gesture that’ll scratch the guilt itch?”

Here’s one answer. The No Kid Hungry campaign has determined that lots more eligible kids can get school breakfast if the meal is offered in even slightly creative ways, like in the classroom itself instead of a cafeteria. (This reduces the shame some children feel when they have to leave the room to go get their food.) So, with funding from Deloitte, No Kid Hungry has created a crowdsourced online map that outlines how schools around the country serve breakfast. The more complete the map, the more ideas are shared, and the more likely it is that schools will find ways to give kids the meals they so desperately need.

And this is where you can come in. This week–in honor of National School Breakfast Week–you can call a school (or two or three), ask up to three simple questions about school breakfast, and report the findings directly into the map. I called the elementary school my older daughter will be attending next year, which I learned does not serve school breakfast. (Only about 13 percent of schools don’t, according to No Kid Hungry.) Now that’s reflected on the map. You’ll be walked through the process at NoKidHungry.org/Breakfast. It won’t take long–but it will make a big difference. The goal is to have info about 10,000 schools by March 31. Will you make a call today?

 

 

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Good News About Kids and Hunger (Really)

Wednesday, October 10th, 2012

Last month we asked you to help bring 1,000,000 meals to American children in need through No Kid Hungry’s campaign with Macaroni Grill.

In less than a month, the campaign exceeded its goal by raising enough money to bring 3,000,000 meals to hungry kids!

You can continue to fight for the 1 in 5 American children who struggle with hunger by donating to No Kid Hungry or visiting their website to learn more about how you can be an advocate for hungry kids in your community.

Thank you to our readers who participated in this campaign! Let us know in the comments if you supported No Kid Hungry’s fight against child hunger.

 

 

Image: Happy girl on field of wheat via  Shutterstock

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An Easy Way to Fight Child Hunger

Thursday, September 13th, 2012

No Kid HungryWe’ve all seen the heartbreaking images of children in third world countries who are barely surviving due to a lack of food. We all know that this tragic reality exists, but did you know that there are 16 million children living here in America who are battling hunger?

We at Parents take this issue very seriously. We recently ran a report on what hunger looks like in America and interviewed a mom who experienced it firsthand.

Romano’s Macaroni Grill is teaming up with Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry campaign to bring 1 million meals to children in need. They invited us and other bloggers to write about their favorite Italian recipe and for every post they will donate $50 to No Kid Hungry, which will provide up to 500 meals for children in need.

Here’s what you can do to help.

Give
Throughout the entire month of September, Macaroni Grill diners can donate $2 to No Kid Hungry and receive $5 off their next visit. A $2 donation could provide up to 20 meals.

Share
Every time a fan shares a photo from the Mac Grill Facebook Gallery, Macaroni Grill will help No Kid Hungry provide a child with a meal.

Tag
Tweet or Instagram a photo of your Macaroni Grill experience with the tag #macgrillgive and Macaroni Grill will provide a child with a meal.

Here’s one of our favorite Italian dishes, the mega-simple Crockpot Lasagna:

Ingredients:           

  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 1 26 ounce jar pasta sauce
  • ¾ cup water
  • 1 15 ounce carton light ricotta cheese
  • 6 lasagna noodles
  • 1 ½ cups shredded mozzarella cheese (6oz.)

Make It
1. Coat a 4-quart slow cooker with cooking spray. In a large microwave-safe bowl stir together pasta sauce and water. Cover bowl with waxed paper and microwave on high for 3 minutes. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl stir together ricotta cheese and carrot; set aside.

2. Spoon 1/2 cup of the sauce mixture in the bottom of prepared slow cooker. Break half of the noodles to fit the bottom of the slow cooker and arrange over the sauce in the slow cooker. Spoon mounds of half of the ricotta mixture over the noodles. Top with 1/2 cup of the mozzarella. Spoon half of the remaining sauce over the layers. Top with remaining noodles, breaking to fit, remaining ricotta mixture, and 1/2 cup mozzarella. Spoon remaining sauce over and top with remaining mozzarella.

3. Cover; cook on low heat setting for 3 hours (noodles should be tender). Remove crockpot from liner and let stand covered for 20 minutes. Makes 6 servings.

Tip
Stovetop Method:  Prepare as above, except increase noodles to 8 and layer ingredients in a large deep skillet. Bring to boiling over medium heat. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, for 35 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand for 20 minutes.

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