Meet the Task Force’s Two Newest Members

April 12, 2013

By: Amber Jekot, Food Planning Task Force Organizer

Join me in Welcoming Kelsey Scherer and Amy Sattergren to the Food Planning Task Force!

Meet Kelsey Scherer, the Child Hunger Outreach Specialist as well as the FPTF’s Children’s Nutrition Work Group leader. Kelsey, a native of Chicago, graduated May 2011 from American University in Washington, DC with a Bachelor’s degree in International Studies.  Her concentration in community development in sub-Saharan Africa and minor in French allowed her to spend eight months studying grassroots community development in Cameroon and Mali.  During college Kelsey interned for International Justice Mission, a human rights agency dedicated to bringing rescue to victims of violent oppression worldwide through a collaborative casework model.  Desiring to learn more about serving her community through agriculture, Kelsey made the leap southward to join us in Waco, Texas to serve as the Produce Intern for World Hunger Relief, Inc.

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Kelsey shares: “I came to the farm with the intention to tinker around in the dirt, to learn about vegetables, to grow in relationship with God and others, and delve deeply into interests that might illuminate my path forward as I consider how to best serve my community, wherever it may be.”

Though drawn initially by the World Hunger Relief Farm, Kelsey has fallen in love with Waco, beckoned by the fertile soil of beauty and potential in this city and its community.

Meet Amy Sattergren, the Food Planning Task Force’s new vista.  Amy, a native of Cincinnati, studied International Studies at Baylor University, minoring in both Spanish and Religion.  Throughout college she served as a Young Life leader for high school students in Waco where she was able to see first hand the effects of poverty.  Amy saw hunger’s impact on the students’ education, nutrition, and future.  Amy’s experience with hunger with students in congruence with her education on international development illustrated to her the frustrating complexity of poverty.  Amy’s experience has led her to believe that collaborative, strategic, and holistic approaches rooted in love are key in combating poverty.  Inspired by her faith, Amy believes she has a call from Psalm 82:3-4 to “maintain the rights of the poor and oppressed.”

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Amy shared: “Hunger is a tangible piece of injustice that we have the responsibility and capability to eliminate.”

Last summer, Amy helped with Summer Meals outreach as well as volunteered at one of the sites. Amy was encouraged by the enthusiasm of the Waco community to work together to serve children food during the summer and is excited about using her experience with the Summer Meals Program to address the barriers that keep our children from accessing food during the summer.

The Task Force is honored to have both Kelsey and Amy serve alongside us as we work to ensure that all community members have access to three nutritious meals a day, seven days a week.

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Free meals available through the end of August

August 8, 2012

Although summer is winding down as the school year approaches, many of Waco, La Vega, and Connally ISD Summer Meal sites still offer meals throughout August. To find a site near you text FoodTX to 877-877, visit wacoisd.org or call 254-750-3763.

Click link an entire list of meal sites and times of operations: http://www.wacoisd.org/cms/one.aspx?portalId=428&pageId=33995


Summer Meals Reaching Fewer Low-Income Children

June 20, 2012

FRAC Report Finds Varied Performance among States and Recommends Steps to Make a Difference this Summer

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE | Contact: Jennifer Adach, 202.986.2200 x3018

Washington, D.C. – June 8, 2012 – Fewer low-income children participated in the nation’s summer nutrition programs in July 2011 than a year earlier, according to Hunger Doesn’t Take a Vacation (pdf), an analysis by the Food Research and Action Center (FRAC). Only one in seven of the low-income students who depended on the National School Lunch Program during the regular 2010-2011 school year received summer meals in July 2011.

View a map with state rankings, participation numbers and participation percentages.

The continuing fallout of the recession has not only led to lost jobs and wages and more need for nutrition support for children, but also to major cuts in summer schools and youth programs. Fewer programs for kids have meant in many states fewer sites serving summer meals. In July 2011, FRAC found that only 14.6 children received summer meals for every 100 low-income children who ate school meals during the 2010-2011 school year – a significant drop from the July 2008 ratio of 17.3:100. Put in other terms, total participation nationwide in the Summer Nutrition Programs has dropped by 112,000 children since July 2008.

“FRAC’s report shows that the recession has meant that more children are using the regular school year food programs, but budget cuts are causing school districts and youth services providers in many states to eliminate or reduce their -summer programs. And that means fewer children are getting the summer meals they need to stay healthy and hunger-free,” explained FRAC President Jim Weill. “Participation in virtually every other federal nutrition program, including the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program and school meals, has grown in recent years to meet the increased need for such help. States, cities, and schools must redouble their efforts to ensure that children don’t pay the price of missed summer meals.”

To read more, please visit http://org2.democracyinaction.org/o/5118/p/salsa/web/common/public/content?content_item_KEY=10188

Can your church or local group help spread the word about Summer Meals in McLennan County this summer? E-mail Shamethia TODAY at Shamethia_Webb@baylor.edu or call (254) 757-5638.

Help us increase participation in the summer meals. Together we can tackle childhood hunger.


S.O.S (Spring Onto Summer) Food Drive THIS FRIDAY!

April 23, 2012

"Children feeding children"

Posters have been posted. Cars have been blanketed with fliers. And, children all over the area are gathering canned food items for this Friday’s S.O.S. Food Drive.

The goal of the Spring Onto Summer Food Drive is “children feeding children.” When school lets out each summer, Central Texas food pantries struggle to provide food for the increased numbers of children no longer receiving free or reduced meals each day at school. This spring food drive hopes to restock those shelves further eliminating food insecurity in McLennan County. Local baseball leagues, soccer teams and youth sports groups are participating in this year’s event. If you would like to promote the food drive and encourage children in your group to donate this Friday, please contact the McLennan County Hunger Coalition at 254-224-8486 or email them at mclennanhunger@gmail.com.

S.O.S 2012 will take place on April 27th from 8am to 6pm.

Volunteers will accept donations at 7 convenient Waco-area locations:

Grande Communications

7200 Imperial Drive, Waco, TX

Channel 25 KXXV

1909 South New Road, Waco, TX

Walmart

600 Hewitt Drive, Waco, TX

1521 Interstate 35 N, Waco, TX

4320 Franklin Avenue, Waco, TX

Sam’s Club

2301 East Waco Drive, Waco, TX

Brookshires

100 Peplow St,  Robinson TX 76706

Want more information? Contact the McLennan County Hunger Coalition at 254-224-8486 or email them at mclennanhunger@gmail.com. You may also visit them online at www.mclennanhunger.org.


Mark your calendars! April 17th Town Hall Meeting Announced.

April 6, 2012

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

The Food Planning Task Force of McLennan County Announces Town Hall Meeting

 [WACO, TX – April 2, 2012]—The Food Planning Task Force of McLennan County is a diverse group of organizations, businesses, and individuals working together to end hunger in McLennan County. The Task Force has scheduled a Town Hall Meeting April 17th from 2-4 pm where several of its work groups will present and update attendees on their efforts to address hunger in McLennan County.  Attendees include members of the McLennan County Hunger Coalition, Caritas of Waco, Meals on Wheels, and World Hunger Relief, Inc. There will also be an update on the Summer Meals program and information on how the community can get involved with Summer Meals.

The Town Hall Meeting is April 17th from 2-4 pm in the Cooper Room at the Greater Waco Chamber of Commerce.

The public is invited to the meeting. It is a great opportunity to see what the Food Planning Task Force is doing in the community and to ask questions and offer feedback.

For more information, please contact:

Shamethia Webb

FPTF Coordinator

Texas Hunger Initiative

Shamethia_Webb@baylor.edu

(254) 757-5638

OR

Alexis Christenson

Field Organizer

Food Planning Task Force

fptfmc@gmail.com

(254) 757-5638


S.O.S. Food Drive set for April 27, 2012

March 22, 2012

The Spring Onto Summer (S.O.S) Food Drive is upon us!

With summer quickly approaching, local pantries prepare for increased numbers as children who normally eat breakfast and lunch at school are home for the summer. Without the benefit of these guaranteed meals, thousands of area children suffer from food insecurity. And with that, local pantries struggle to supply food for the increased demand.

Last year, the McLennan County Hunger Coalition, local food pantries, Grande Communications and KXXV partnered to bring food to these pantries to assist during the summer months. The Spring Onto Summer (S.O.S.) Food Drive was born, and now — in its second year — added community partners promise continued success.

S.O.S 2012 will take place on April 27th from 8am to 6pm. Remember: Hunger doesn’t take a summer vacation! Bring your non-perishable food items and/or monetary donations and help change the life of a hungry child in McLennan County.

To learn more, visit http://www.mclennanhunger.org.

Volunteer Opportunities:

Volunteers are needed from 8am to 6pm on April 27th to pick up food at the drop-off locationsPlease call the McLennan County Hunger Coalition at 254-224-8486 or send an email to mclennanhunger@gmail.com

Locations Include:

Grande Communications

7200 Imperial Drive, Waco, TX

Channel 25 KXXV

1909 South New Road, Waco, TX

Walmart Stores

600 Hewitt Drive, Waco, TX

1521 Interstate 35 N, Waco, TX

4320 Franklin Avenue, Waco, TX

Sam’s Club

2301 East Waco Drive, Waco, TX

Brookshires

100 Peplow St,  Robinson TX 76706

*Posted by Chelle Samaniego (Waco, Texas)


McLennan County Hunger Coalition Puts Valero Grant to Good Use

February 28, 2012

The McLennan County Hunger Coalition (MCHC) recently received a grant from Valero for $22,500 to use toward ending child and youth hunger in our community. So far, the coalition has passed on $13,500 to organizations in need in McLennan County. See what they have planned for the rest at http://www.mclennanhunger.org.