The daily routine of waking up, getting ready, but skipping breakfast. Trying to focus on the test you’re taking, but your stomach is growling. Going all day without food. Sadly, this isn’t uncommon for many people. According to Feeding America’s article “Map the Meal Gap”, approximately 1.5 million people in Los Angeles don’t have enough money to buy a sufficient amount of food. If I were mayor of my town, I would want to decrease the number of people that go hungry each day. To start with fixing this problem, I will primarily focus on kids in school.
Many students attend school hungry, but are too embarrassed to say anything. I feel that schools should take responsibility for this issue because skipping a meal can make it hard for a student to focus in school. Although there are school lunches, sometimes there is a fee charged because the family makes more money than the limit set for free lunch. But this is unfair because these families could also be suffering. The amount paid for school lunches adds up pretty quickly, especially if a student has to pay for both breakfast and lunch. In order to give everyone a chance to have a meal, I would want to make these school lunches free for everyone.
Students often go home hungry because their family doesn’t have enough money to provide them with the nutrition needed. I would create a program that will support these type of families. This program would give the family a bag full of fruits, vegetables, and snacks at a reduced price. During the summer, children are more likely to suffer from hunger because their main food source was school. This will allow students to have access to food all year long. This program will give families tips on recipes that use affordable and healthy ingredients. Also, it will present ways on how to maximize the amount of food purchased based on their budgets.
Hunger is a serious problem that needs to be dealt with because it could possibly lead to malnutrition if someone is hungry for a sustained period of time. In young children, malnutrition could lead to a stunt in growth, and delayed brain function. These kids are also more prone to diseases.
Fixing the hunger program can’t be solved in a day and I’m not actually mayor, but as a community we can make change. One of my teachers became informed about how many students go through the day hungry. Especially for students that stay after school for clubs, sports, or other activities. With her own money she buys the ingredients to make peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. She keeps this in her classroom and allows us to make them anytime. This is an example that it is possible to create change in my town, even if it is something small. With just one person, she was able to help all her students.
No matter which city you live in, there are are hundreds of kids that go hungry every day. As a community we are responsible for helping our fellow neighbors, whether it be donating to food pantries or handing a sandwich to someone homeless. No one should live their life hungry.