Think before you donate. Let us explain. Food insecurity is rampant in this country, with one in seven Americans having to rely on food pantries and soup kitchens to survive. To feed this massive population, nearly 46 million people, these organizations rely almost entirely on donations.
That’s where you and I come into the picture. Typically, we offload into food drives the dusty cans from the back of our kitchen cabinets. We use food drives as a kind of dumping ground for the items we won’t eat, rather than truly considering how to nourish our fellow citizens.
Too often, the food we donate is full of fat, salt, and sugar. Of course, people in need will take what they can get from the agencies that receive and distribute food drive donations. But people who are food insecure are already prone to having poor diets, since grocery stores are not readily accessible in many low-income communities and even when they are, fresh produce is beyond their means.
For this reason, our nation’s poor tend to consume readily available convenience store and fast food fare, placing them at risk for obesity, weakened brain function, as well as debilitating and costly diseases.