51 Ways To Fight Hunger In America Slideshow

Get a haircut, take a walk, start a food drive — it all helps

1. Add $1 to Your Check

Action Against Hunger brings together various establishments through a campaign called ‘Restaurants Against Hunger. All you have to do is dine out at a participating restaurant and elect to add $1 to your check. Restaurants also donate a percentage of sales to a child in need. Show your participation by sharing a picture online with the hashtag ‘RestaurantsXHunger’.

2. Adopt Farmland

Become a partner in the fight against hunger by adopting an acre of farmland with Adopt-an-Acre, organized by Oregon-based Farmers Ending Hunger. Contributions are used to cover the costs associated with product sorting, canning, and freezing to extend the life of fresh produce, processing wheat to make pancake mix, storing food, and delivering it to the Oregon Food Bank.

3. Bake Bread

If you are a bread baker and have leftovers at the end of the day, get your organization involved in Panera's Operation Dough-Nation. In this program, unsold bakery products are packaged at the end of each day and donated to local food banks and charities.

4. Be An Extreme Coupon-er

3.	Be An Extreme Coupon-er

Photo Modified: Flickr / Chris Potter / CC BY 4.0

Have you ever seen the show Extreme Coupons and thought, “Why would I need to purchase 20 cans of baked beans?” You can use that sale to purchase a surplus of goods to give back to your local food pantry.

 

5. Buy a Bowl Of Soup

With Empty Bowls, the premise is simple: Purchase a bowl of soup in an original bowl created by a local artist, and proceeds will go toward helping organizations provide meals to those who need them. The organization, which is more than 20 years old, hosts events year-round at local schools, parks, community centers, and more . With events all across the country it’s easy to become involved. The bowl you buy becomes a keepsake and a reminder that there are always empty bowls to be filled in America.

6. Buy Fair Trade Stuff

The Hunger Site is an online activism website that sells fair trade items, including seasonal home décor, African products, and everyday goods, to benefit participating charities like Feeding America, Millennium Promise, and Mercy Corps. Proceeds are split between the organizations and go toward fighting hunger in the United States, as well as in more than 74 countries around the world.

7. Buy Things at Discount Prices

5.	Buy Things at Discount Prices

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Moolala is a daily deals website offering deep discounts on everything from 1,600-thread-count sheet sets to customized bobble heads to iPhone zoom lenses. The site features deals from participating nonprofit organizations, which allow buyers to donate to a specific cause, such as Children's HopeChest, which receives gifts through Moolala that are donated to children in need. The more you shop at participating stores, the more they donate to the fight against hunger.

 

8. Blog About Hunger

WhyHunger launched a partnership with a group of food bloggers committed to the fight against hunger. The program, called Bloggers Without Borders, supports organizations that work to address the injustices of our food system. The team uses its ability to raise awareness in the blogging community to help further the goals of other food-related organizations.Get involved by visiting their website and start to spread the word about the problems surrounding hunger.

9. Clean Your House

Kill two birds with one stone: Clean out your home and feed children. Better Homes and Gardens' Clean Out for Kids is a national effort that encourages people to clean their homes, host a yard sale, and donate its proceeds to Share Our Strength, a national nonprofit fighting to end childhood hunger.

10. Collect Food and Money

8.	Collect Food and Money

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Grind Out Hunger is a Santa Cruz-based campaign created by skateboarders that aims to challenge local elementary, middle, and high schools to collect food and raise money for hungry children. The organization focuses on three foundations: empowering, educating, and fighting hunger.

11. Collect Money at Your Party

Mazon, which means food or sustenance in Hebrew, is a national Jewish organization dedicated exclusively to fighting hunger. Include MAZON in your celebrations, be they weddings, bar and bat mitzvahs, anniversaries, or birthdays, by integrating MAZON's donation request forms into your party, or by donating a percentage of the cost of the celebration to the organization.

12. Create Art With Cans

Canstuction is a charity that holds annual competitions in which participants design and build giant structures made of canned foods. . Participants can have can’s donated, or buy them; but each team transports all canned goods for the competition.

All of the canned foods used in the competitions are then donated to local food banks

13. Dine in Someone Else's Shoes

To get some perspective and spread awareness, attend or take someone to an Oxfam America Hunger Banquet. Guests randomly draw tickets that assign them to tables of different income levels,  based on statistics about the number of people living in poverty. Depending on where you sit, you'll receive a full dinner or share sparse portions of rice and water . All proceeds are donated to the less fortunate.

 

 

 

14. Draw a Picture

The World Food Programme sponsors themed drawing contests. This past year’s theme was Zero Hunger, Endless Possibilities. In previous years the contest has been hosted at schools with a World Feeding Programme. The aim of the contest is to educate children about a brighter future and how they can help end hunger.

 

 

15. Drive and Deliver

Meals on Wheels is always looking for volunteers to act as drivers and runners in cities in the U.S. and Canada. All you have to do is pick up food at a nearby Meals on Wheels (MOW) location , and then deliver it to recipients of the program. This foundation is operates entirely on cash donations and volunteers. MOW works specifically to aid senior citizens that are in need of nourishing meals.

 

 

 

16. Eat and Drink to End Hunger in Ohio

People in Columbus have the right idea; they are drinking to end hunger. Here the annual event FOODFIGHT benefits patrons locally who are struggling with hunger. With a great selection of restaurants and bars in the area, there is no shortage of participating vendors. If you dine in any of them, 5% of your check is donated to a family in need.

17. Go on a Color Run

20.	Go on a Color Run

Photo Modified: Flickr / Scooter Lowrimore / CC BY 4.0

Active.com hosts a color run to end hunger. When you register, you’ll donate money towards ending hunger and receive a white tee shirt. As you pass each kilometer checkpoint, you will be doused with paint, but don’t worry if marathons aren’t your thing. This race isn’t timed and your only goal is to cross the finish line as colorful as possible.

18. Go Hunting

Farmers and Hunters Feeding the Hungry brings fresh meat and vegetables to the needy. Those who are living without food security often don’t eat fresh meat because of its high expense. FHFH looks to change that. All meats (game that his hunted by their volunteers) and vegetables harvested by this organization are donated to soup kitchens and local aids. Sign up and get involved at www.fhfh.org

19. Get Moving

Move for Hunger takes the hassle out of the moving process and takes care of all the non-perishable food you might otherwise throw away. Its team of dedicated movers will pick up your unopened, non-perishable foods during your moving process, and deliver them to a local food bank. The organization works with more than 600 moving companies in North America.

20. Get Out and Glean

A religious-based ecumenical nonprofit charitable organization, the Society of St. Andrew, takes as its motto "Gleaning America's Fields — Feeding America's Hungry." Since 1983, the organization has arranged networks of volunteers to salvage surplus produce, including crops left in the field after harvest, from farms all over the nation. Gleaning, as this activity is known, dates back to biblical times. Each year, more than 30,000 unpaid workers from schools, churches, synagogues, and other institutions around America help collect more food.

 

 

21. Get on Pinterest

A lot of us spend far too much time on Pinterest already, so let’s make a difference while we pin. Share ideas with others and create your own movement to fight hunger. Pin to boards about events in your city, an inspiring story, or share videos of hunger fighters.

22. Go to a Concert

If you’re a music lover then attend concerts and events held by Why Hunger. The annual Hungerthon® is quickly becoming a tradition for families on Thanksgiving. This event has helped raise millions of dollars in an effort to end hunger and poverty.

23. Go to a Food Fight

23.	Go to a Food Fight

Photo Modified: Flickr / DC Central Kitchen / CC BY 4.0

For $200 you can buy a ticket to The Capital Food Fight  November 12, which pits great chefs against each other in Iron Chef-like tournaments using secret ingredients. There are also tastings of signature dishes from dozens of D.C.'s hottest restaurants. The event benefits DC Central Kitchen's job training, meal distribution, and support for local food systems.

24. Get Your Hair Cut

Follow the lead of Farrer's Barber Shop in Charlotte, and create a C.A.N.S. 4 Cuts drive (C.A.N.S. stands for Caring About Needs in Society). Partner your hair salon with a local food bank and set up a barter system for a good cause.

25. Help AARP

By making donations or volunteering with the organization, you can AARP’s Drive to End Hunger, helping fight hunger in older Americans. Click here to donate.

26. Help Grow

Grow food locally by getting involved in community gardening projects. Not only does this project help provide food for your neighborhood but it also teaches kids how to garden and be self-sufficient. All food grown is given back to the community.The American Community Gardening Association can help you find a garden and get started.

27. Help Rebuild a Life

Part of the Solution (POTS) is a Bronx-based organization that aims to help those in need rebuild their lives. It offers free services including a community dining room and pantry, showers, clothes, haircuts, and a mail system. Since POTS relies on donations and volunteers from the community, you can help by donating food, clothes, or by volunteering or making a contribution.

28. Hold a Bake Sale

baking

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Bake Sale for No Kid Hungry, an initiative presented by Domino Sugar, C&H Sugar, Duncan Hines, and Kmart, is a national fundraiser that encourages people to hold bake sales in their communities and raise money to end childhood hunger. You can donate your own bake sale proceeds online or make a donation toward an existing bake sale.

29. Host a Movie Screening

Nourish: Food + Community has won awards and recognition for its illustration of the role food plays in the world and how it is connected to biodiversity, climate change, public health, social justice, and our personal lives. By hosting a screening of the film, you can help start a conversation about food and sustainability in your own community.

30. Host a Meal Packing Event

28.	Host a Meal Packing Event

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Stop Hunger  hosts meal-packing events that allow individuals to gain hands-on experience in the fight against hunger. Volunteers work on packing meals and raising awareness.

 

 

31. Involve the Employers

48.	Involve the Employers

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Many employers will match the donations that you give, which will effectively double the contribution to ending hunger. But don’t just stop at your work, talk to neighboring business’ and get the entire community involved in the fight.

32. Join a Food Drive

29.	Join a Food Drive

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No matter where you live in America, chances are there's a food drive going on nearby — and if there isn't, you can start your own. Although traditional food drives are limited to non-perishable goods, you can donate healthier food such as fruit and vegetablesthrough You Give Goods. On the organization’s website, you can set up an online food drive at no cost. People buy food on the site to donate to your drive, and You Give Goods delivers the food for you. Or, you can deliver it to any of the hundreds of ongoing food drives yourself.

 

 

33. Label Sort and Package

Food Lifeline, an organization dedicated to eradicating hunger in western Washington State, is looking for groups ­­–– ranging in size from eight to 60 people –– to sign up to help label, sort, and repackage food for distribution at their Shoreline warehouse. Food Lifeline provides food to participating banks and shelters locally, but this is an idea that could be replicated anywhere across the country.

34. Lead a Grocery Store Tour

Eating healthy on a budget is possible. Help families learn to cook and shop for healthy, affordable, delicious meals by leading a grocery store tour in your community. Share Our Strength's Cooking Matters at the Store empowers families by arming them with the skills to compare foods for cost and nutrition. Click here to become a tour leader today. The program is part of the No Kid Hungry campaign to connect kids at risk of hunger.

35. Listen to The Radio

You won't have to put on your running shoes to participate in this marathon. The popular Denver radio hosts Dom Testa and Jane London, on Mix 100  (officially KIMN) — named the region's Best Morning DJs —  will stay on the air for 24 hours straight this November 14, trying to beat last year's record of more than $1.1 million raised for the Food Bank of the Rockies. Those donations were turned into more than 121,000 meals for hungry children and families in the Rocky Mountain region. This will be the 16th year the two personalities have done their 24-hour stint; in that time, they've raised over $7 million in all. Listen to their show, get inspired, and donate on the Food Bank website. Just $1 can provide four meals. You don't even have to live in the Denver area; the station streams live at Mix100.com.

 

 

 

 

36. Pack a Meal

33.	Pack a Meal

Photo Modified: Flickr / Randy Heinitz / CC BY 4.0

Volunteer with The Hunger Coalition, a nonprofit organization that aims to provide kid-friendly single-serving food items to children who otherwise may not have enough to eat when outside the safety net of school meal programs. You can collect food, pack bags, or offer to distribute the food to participating schools and students in your community.

37. Pick Some Fruit

Food Forward is a volunteer-powered grassroots group dedicated to reconnecting to our food system and making change around urban hunger. They rescue fresh local produce that would otherwise go to waste and donate 100 percent of the fruit to the hungry. Food Forward is always on the lookout for volunteers and neighbors with mature fruit trees and excess fruit or vegetables.

38. Plant Some Produce

Connecticut Food Bank’s Plant a Row for the Hungry program enables farmers and community gardeners to plant an extra row of produce to donate to local hunger-relief efforts. Plant a Row also works with local farmers markets, farms, and orchards to collect unsold, wholesome produce for food-assistance programs.

39. Read a Book

Heifer Internationals has been making a dent in hunger by encouraging students to pick up a book. Children fundraise by getting sponsors to donate for every, book, chapter, or page they finish! Not only does this raise money to battle hunger pains, it also furthers the education of children.

40. Relay Food to the Needy

37.	Relay Food to the Needy

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Food Runners volunteers pick up excess perishable and prepared food from restaurants, caterers, bakeries, hospitals, event planners, corporate cafeterias, and hotels in San Francisco and deliver more than 15 tons of food a week to shelters and neighborhood programs that feed the hungry. Visit their site to become a food runner and work to alleviate hunger.

41. Share The Leftovers

38.	Share The Leftovers

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Instead of throwing out the chicken you couldn’t finish, share the leftovers with a neighbor or someone in need on your street. Rising food prices are causing many families to go without, so put your Tupperware to good use.

42. Share What You Had For Breakfast

In an effort to share one million breakfasts with children who need them, Kellogg’s started asking people to share their breakfasts digitally and they've surpassed their goal, with 1.5 million breakfasts shared so far. A simple share (with the hashtag #sharebreakfast) of what you ate for breakfast on Kellogg's Facebook Page, Twitter, or Pinterest, or watching this Kellogg’s YouTube video will prompt a donation to Action for Healthy Kids

43. Skip Lunch

41.	Skip Lunch

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The Skip Lunch Fight Hunger campaign is centered on the idea of donating the cost of one of your meals to someone who needs it. How much do we spend on lunch daily? If you spend around $15, the donation you could make instead would make a difference in the lives of 60 children. Go ahead and skip lunch today.

45. Take a Photo

By making a donation to the United Nations World Food Programme and uploading a photo of a loved one to the Wall Against Hunger, you can save a life by delivering food to someone who needs it.  

46. Take the Train

Capitol Corridor is fighting hunger one stop at a time. With the help of local food banks, it has created food drops at numerous train station stops. Along with this, you are also welcome to make a donation on board!

47. Take a Walk

More than 2,000 communities across the country participate in CROP Hunger Walks each year, raising funds for local hunger-fighting organizations and agencies, as well as international relief efforts. With more than 1,600 walks a year, there are plenty of chances to get involved and work toward their cause of "Ending hunger one step at a time."

48. Take a Quiz

For every quiz question you answer correctly on freerice.com, 10 grains of rice will be donated to the United Nations World Food Programme. If you get an answer wrong, you’re given an easier question, and if you get one right, you’re given a harder one. Use this as fun brainteasers and a simple way to give back.

49. Use Your Apps

TangoTab is an app that gives users access to local deals at their favorite restaurants. Not only is the app free, the best part is that every time you claim an offer from the app, TangoTab donates a meal to local food banks and hunger-related charities. The app's tagline says it best: "When you eat, they eat."

50. Walk or Run

It seems fitting that one of the major hunger-fighting outdoor charity events in California would be located in Stockton, in the heart of the state's Central Valley, the source of the vast majority of the food crops we consume (including tomatoes, grapes, asparagus, and almonds –– about 230 kinds of produce in all). This year, the grassroots organization hosts its 11th-annual Run or Walk Against Hunger on Thanksgiving morning, November 27.

51. Watch a Football Game

Blending America’s passions for football, food, and helping others, the Fight Hunger Bowl is an annual post-season college football game, certified by the NCAA and played at AT&T Park in San Francisco. This year’s kickoff is December 30, and all proceeds from the event are donated to local nonprofits.