Hunger Awareness Month is May 2017

Emergency Food Network brings awareness to hunger in Pierce County with opportunities for community members to get involved in local hunger relief.

May 2017 is officially Hunger Awareness Month. This first-time proclamation in Pierce County is designed to inspire community members to take action and raise awareness about the need in Pierce County. More than 1.3 million visits are made to food pantries, meal sites, and shelters by residents in Pierce County each year. 54% of these visits are children and seniors.

“May is the perfect time to bring attention to hunger as food pantries and meal sites are gearing up for one of the busiest times of the year,” said Helen McGovern-Pilant, Executive Director of Emergency Food Network.

There are approximately 60,000 children in the Pierce County school system who receive free or reduced breakfast and/or lunch. When schools are out for the summer break these students will no longer receive the one or two meals provided each day at school. Many of these children and their families will rely on food from food pantries or meal sites to help supplement their nutritional intake during the summer months.

“There are many ways to make a difference in the month of May,” said McGovern-Pilant. “We’ve made it easy for community members to join us in providing the increased food that will be needed when families in need make extra trips to the food pantry.”

Pierce County residents are encouraged to get involved in the month of May by choosing at least one or more activities to help their neighbors in need. Hunger Awareness Month activities include leaving a donation of food out by your mailbox during the Letter Carriers’ Food Drive, walking or running at the Hunger Walk & 5K Run,  volunteering at Emergency Food Network’s warehouse or Mother Earth Farm, and more. See a complete list of Hunger Awareness Month events and volunteer opportunities.

The largest Hunger Awareness Month event is the Hunger Walk & 5K Run on May 20 at Fort Steilacoom Park. Opportunities to walk around the lake, run through the trees in the chip-timed 5K, or volunteer at the event are all available. Visit the Hunger Walk & 5K Run website for more information or to register.