Food Matters

Inadvertently the answer to my question from the previous post, regarding the programs and processes of the Food Bank system, have been answered. Or at least the surface of the system unfolded, literally, in the Spring 2012 addition “food matters,” delivered to my doorstep and sent complimentary, by the San Francisco Food Bank (& I suppose the Postal Service).

I may have held my breath as I read the front headline:

inside– Ending Childhood Hunger

In truth, it offers a lot of promise. Such as insight into the “Morning Snack Program, from trucks to classrooms,” how healthy food boosts nutrition, consequently improving concentration & over-all academics.

An article entitled, Building Community with Food, School Food Programs Make A Difference, highlights the successes of a local elementary school….”With the Food Bank’s Healthy Children Pantries and the Morning Snack Program, plus an on-site community garden, Sanchez Elementary has created a holistic approach where food feeds children and their families, builds community, and provides learning opportunities.”

“Since introducing the food programs, the school has seen a marked improvement in the students’ overall focus and school attendance…attendance has increased to over 95%. There are a lot of factors…but you can never ignore a healthy diet and improved sense of community.”

These programs exist and are making a difference. By utilizing models already in place, and expanding on their successes, we can end hunger as we know it today.

Here is more to ponder:

“Time and again, research into childhood hunger has shown that kids who are even mildly undernourished often develop health problems that can last into adulthood and can also have trouble concentrating and learning in school.”

“If your stomach has ever rumbled with hunger, you know firsthand how hard it is to focus on anything besides finding something to eat. Have a snack and you are back on track towards accomplishing the task at hand. It’s a simple solution to a biological need, but for the 1 in 5 children in San Francisco and Marin who face the prospect of hunger every day, that quick fix can be elusive.”

So BigMama says, let’s be a catalyst for change…grow local and get involved!

On this Mother’s Day….I offer a prayer to the great spirits of maternal energy….

I hear your children crying, and I say, come into my garden and be satiated.