Somerville Reads is a project that promotes literacy and community by encouraging people all over the City to read and discuss books on the same theme. For our third annual program, the subject is food—local, sustainable, delicious!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Hunger Amidst Plenty

As we continue our month-long conversation about food, it's important to remember that the food issues many of us have—what to buy organic, whether to start a home garden, should we stop eating meat—are luxuries. According to the most recent Project Bread Status Report on Hunger, in 2010 10.8% of Massachusetts households were "food insecure." To put it bluntly, if you start knocking on doors in this state, there's at least one person living behind every tenth door who doesn't get enough to eat.

Giving won't fix such a systemic problem, but it can help some people enduring hard times, and give some children a better chance at getting the food they need to grow up healthy. Hunger affects not just a child's height and weight, but their ability to learn and their emotional well-being, and can have negative health consequences for the rest of their lives.

We've set up a box for donations to the food pantry at the Elizabeth Peabody House. It's in the lobby of the main library by the auditorium door. A library staff member will take it to EPH whenever it gets full. Please do not bring any perishables. Pantries need foods with a relatively long shelf life. Examples of items to donate include:

Parmalat (milk processed so it can be stored without refrigeration)
peanut butter
canned meat & vegetables
canned stews
canned soups
dried beans
fruit juice and other shelf-stable beverages
canned tuna
mac and cheese mixes

Thanks to all who contribute.

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