September is Hunger Action Month, and the Food Bank of Northwest Indiana is kicking off the nationwide awareness campaign by distributing fresh fruits and veggies, protein, canned goods, and other nutritious items to more than 1,000 Northwest Indiana residents in need of food assistance. The 5th Annual Mobile Market distributions will be held on Thursday, September 1 (3:00 – 6:00pm) at Wicker Memorial Park in Highland, and Wednesday, September 7 (4:00 – 6:00pm) at the Salvation Army South Haven in Valparaiso.
More than 100,000 people across Lake and Porter counties struggle with hunger and may not know where their next meal will come from. That number includes one in five kids who often don’t have enough to eat.
The goal of Hunger Action Month is to raise awareness about the critical issue of food insecurity across the Region and inspire others to get involved in the fight against hunger. About 50 volunteers will give their time to help with the Mobile Market food distributions, including more than a dozen members of the Hammond High ROTC.
“Hunger exists in every community across the Region,” said Harry Vande Velde, interim executive director of the Food Bank of Northwest Indiana. “It is critical that we not only recognize this basic need, but that we also rally the community together to fight hunger and work toward a future where all of our neighbors receive the good, nutritious meals they deserve.”
This year’s campaign focuses on the strong connection between hunger and health, and asks people to consider how it must feel to live with an empty stomach. Food insecurity has significant effects on an individual’s overall health and wellness; it puts a healthy life and a promising future at risk.
In addition to canned goods, protein, grains, and other meal items, the Food Bank will also distribute a 15-pound box of fresh, healthy produce to those receiving food assistance at the Hunger Action Month Mobile Markets. Lake and Porter county residents attending the distribution should bring proof of residency (ID, rent receipt, utility bill, etc.) and bags and boxes to carry their items in.