Tag Archives: Go Orange

Get your pumpkin on and Go Orange for No Kid Hungry!

1 Oct
Thanks to Paula over at My Soup For You for teaming up with me today to bring you some great pumpkin recipes, and for bringing even more awareness to No Kid Hungry!

Thanks to Paula over at My Soup For You for teaming up with me today to bring you some great pumpkin recipes, and for bringing even more awareness to No Kid Hungry!

It’s October! It’s fall. It’s the season of beautiful leaves, fun autumn events like apple picking, hay rides and pumpkin carving.

Pumpkin….mmmmm…..does it make you think of pumpkin spiced coffee, pumpkin ice cream, pumpkin muffins and pumpkin pie?!

Me too!!

We’re a lucky bunch, most of us. We can run through the drive through at the local donut shop and get this month’s pumpkin flavored muffin or drink, without too much of a struggle. We can pop a recipe for my good friend Paula’s Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread or her Pumpkin Soup right into the oven and enjoy it without too much trouble. All those warm, orange flavors warm our bellies and our thoughts all throughout the fall.

We’re very lucky.

Not everyone is so lucky, however. According to the No Kid Hungry statistics for our local area, as of June 2013 (more than a year ago), 22% of kids in our little state were struggling with hunger. Fifty-five percent of them were eligible for free or reduced lunch at school, and only 51% of those students were eating school breakfast.

At a recent school event I covered for the newspaper earlier this month, when a room full of young students were asked what the most important thing was that they’d miss if they were late to school, their answer wasn’t attendance, or morning math, or reading, it was breakfast. Every student who raised their hand was worried that if they were late to school in the morning, they’d go hungry until lunchtime.

Childhood hunger across our nation is a growing problem, but we can do something to help.

Last year, you may remember that our own family started a local Go Orange Day for No Kid Hungry after seeing a television commercial about the nationwide effort to help end childhood hunger. Nationally, the official Go Orange Day for No Kid Hungry is at the end of September, but we opted to do ours just a little bit later at the start of October. It was a big success. We rallied our large school district, the superintendent’s offices and City Hall all to Go Orange for No Kid Hungry, and raised over $1000 in monetary donations as well as bringing in hundreds of pounds of non-perishable food items for our local food pantry. We were helping to put food on the tables of families all around us, and it was a great feeling.  All around us, local restaurants and other establishments went Orange as well, donating portions of their proceeds to the No Kid Hungry effort, and wearing orange to show their spirit.

This year, we’re doing it again. We’ve pushed our date out slightly further, and this year on Friday, October 31, Halloween Day we’ll be getting our pumpkin on, going Orange for No Kid Hungry again. We’ve rallied our school district, our superintendent’s office, City Hall, and even our church to help us put an end to childhood hunger again this year. So far we’ve had TEN local responses for going Orange on Halloween Day. Even more exciting, we’ve had some inquiries from local folks wanting to spread this year’s local Go Orange day to their communities and schools within our state and neighboring areas. All around our city, people will be showing their Halloween spirit, dressing in orange, donating money and/or non-perishable food items on Halloween Day and helping out their neighbors all in a day’s work.

We are thrilled. Wouldn’t it be great if we could really make a difference EVERY YEAR?

Wouldn’t it be great if just by spreading awareness and spreading the word, we could help feed other families?

We are foodies, we are blessed, we are thankful to be able to cook and bake and eat our fun pumpkin flavors in the spirit of the season, all month long.

So I ask you: will you get your pumpkin on this Halloween Day too? Will you spread the awareness of childhood hunger in your area and continue the good work of No Kid Hungry and their Go Orange efforts in your city or town, at your school or church or temple? Will you help?

Get your pumpkin on. Visit Paula’s blog over at My Soup for You and help her spread the word too. Make some Pumpkin Soup. Grab some Pilgrim Pies, eat some pumpkin spiced Chex snack mix, and be thoughtful, be thankful that you can help another family in such a simple way.



Monday Musings: Will you “Go Orange” for No Kid Hungry?

23 Sep
September is No Kid Hungry month. There's lots you can do!

September is No Kid Hungry month. There’s lots you can do!

Unfortunately, we probably watch more TV than we should. I’m sure we’re not alone. However, on occasion, you catch something television that might be beneficial, and I’m not talking about your usual infomercials either.

Recently, our girls saw a commercial on TV that really caught their attention, a sad commercial, and they called me out of the kitchen to watch it as they ran it again. It was a commercial for No Kid Hungry, a nonprofit organization trying to fight childhood hunger.

“Isn’t that sad?” They said.

And it was sad.

Coincidentally though, in the way that fate works, I had just the day before sent Caroline a link to an essay contest sponsored by No Kid Hungry, for students ages 13 and up. I hadn’t actually looked into the contest much, but I saw the age range, and she fit right into it, so I sent it to her.

The television commercial was asking kids to “Go Orange” on Tuesday, September 24, to help in the fight against childhood hunger.

“We should do that!” my kids said.

“Go ahead,” I said.

And their wheels started turning. Between the three of them they attend two separate schools, but there are about 20 schools in total all over the city. They decided to speak to their own principals first and see if a “Go Orange” day could be held in their own schools, and then reach out to both the superintendent and mayor of our city to see if the anti-hunger campaign could be extended to as many schools in the city as possible, as well as to the offices in the city administration.

Both principals responded favorably, and a date of September 27 was decided on, a Friday, which is often a “dress down for charity” day for teachers and employees in the city anyway.

The girls decided that a donation of either $1 or one canned good would be the ticket to being able to “Go Orange” on the 27th at their two schools. All of the proceeds would benefit the local food bank in our city, so that our collections would go to help those in our own community who may be struggling.

The response from both the superintendent and the mayor were both a resounding “Yes,” and it was exciting have so many emails coming in, expressing support and asking questions so that schools could host their own “Go Orange” days on Friday.

Of course, a big part of “Going Orange” is having just the right clothes and accessories, and after a thorough inventory of all their wardrobes, it was determined that we have way more orange clothes than we thought we had. We could probably dress them in orange for a week.

Next up: Advertising.

They spent the next Friday evening creating some posters which would advertise the event in their own schools. Morning announcements were written and announced over the loud speaker at school, and it was being shared on Instagram and Twitter almost instantly.

We’ve participated in lots of food drives before, but we’ve never spearheaded one ourselves. It’ll be interesting to see how this one goes, what we’ll learn, and best of all, how much we can help others in our own city who are struggling. I am proud of the kids for taking this on themselves, for doing the legwork, and especially Caroline for reaching out beyond the schools.

I share this with you today, because you too can participate! You can host a “Go Orange” day at your place of business, in a scout troop, at your place of worship or you could make a donation to a local food pantry this month. There are even restaurants where you can eat, which support No Kid Hungry. Look online and see if there are any near you.

So what do you think? Will you “Go Orange” this month too?