By Cherri Gregg
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – The Mayor’s Office partnered with several anti-hunger organizations yesterday for a day-long national conference on ending hunger in America.
“Most Philadelphians care deeply about hunger, but they don’t know the most effective ways to get involved,” says Joel Berg, Executive Director of the NYC Coalition Against Hunger. He is one of the leaders of the national “Ending Hunger Through Service.” He says most people volunteer to fight hunger through one-day food drives and in soup kitchens, but there are more effective ways to help the cause, like making calls to lawmakers.
“Right now there are tens of billions of dollars of cuts in the food stamp SNAP program, pending before Congress. If those are enacted, that will dwarf everything that every soup kitchen, food bank, food rescue kitchen does,” he says. Other ways to help include volunteering your talents.
“If they’re an accountant, they can lend their accounting skills to a small agency,” he says. “If they know how to design a website, they can help with that. Anyone listening can help.”
Carey Morgan is the Executive Director of the Coalition Against Hunger here in Philadelphia. She says American hunger doesn’t look like hunger overseas, but it’s just as real and the situation is dire.
“In America, there are about 46 million people who are struggling to put food on the table every day,” she says. Morgan advises anyone who cares about stopping hunger to become an advocate.
“That is the most effective way that anyone can volunteer, because when you change policies that is the way you help the most people,” she says.
For more info on how you can help, go to www.hungervolunteers.org.