It seems each year September’s Hunger Action Month becomes more and more important. Lines at food banks grow longer, and millions more people struggle to put food on the table. We saw this ease last year as more COVID restrictions were lifted for both Americans and Canadians, but inflation is now taking another heavy toll.
Over 38 million Americans (1 in 8), 12 million of whom are children (1 in 6), struggle with finding their next meal. At the same time, over a third (35%) of the food in America goes uneaten or unsold.
As we approach Hunger Action Month, it is important to do just that -- take action. Here are 30 ways to fight food insecurity and food waste from things that are a little more intensive to others that can easily be done at home.
1. Make a $50 Donation to Move For Hunger and Get a FREE T-Shirt!
Great news! Your donation will be matched by our friends at Altair Global (up to $5,000), so your $50 donation will provide over 250 meals to those in need. Plus, you’ll also receive a free "Fight Hunger" T-Shirt to help spread awareness during September's Hunger Action Month!
2. Host a Food Drive
Signing up to host a food drive is a really easy way to support your community. We give you all the tools you need to make it successful in your community either. Sign up to host a food drive for Hunger Action Month here!
3. Hold a Fundraiser
Another simple option for helping out during Hunger Action Month is by holding a fundraiser. We have a variety of fundraisers that you can host including some that are their own virtual events like a trivia night. When you sign up, you will get supplies to help you run the fundraiser and you can find the instructions and hunger statistics here.
4. Volunteer at Your Local Food Bank
Donating your time at your local food bank is another great option for getting involved that enables you to have a peek at the impact of your work. Virtual opportunities are also available, so be sure to check out experiences that interest you.
5. Turn Your Miles Into Meals by Joining Our Race Team
Run or walk marathons? Half-marathons? How about a nice and easy 5k? You can get active and help provide meals to those in need. There are plenty of fall events in almost every corner of the US that you can take part in. Head on over to our Team Move For Hunger page to learn more.
6. Get Your Business Involved
Hosting an in-person or virtual event for your organization or community is a great way to get involved and give back. Move For Hunger provides socially-responsible companies with a number of opportunities to reduce food waste and fight hunger. From Trivia Night to Truck Pulls, we can organize an event that aligns with your values.
7. Join the Move For Hunger Network
If you’re a moving agent or multifamily property (or someone who works in these industries), join our network here to get involved in the fight against hunger!
8. Volunteer at Move For Hunger
That’s right, you can volunteer in our office located in Red Bank, NJ! Grab a few friends and come on down to help put together kits and other various tasks. We supply snacks and drinks in the office and include a Move For Hunger t-shirt for your time. Email [email protected] for more information.
9. Play Trivia
On Tuesday, September 27 we will be hosting a virtual Trivia Night in honor of Hunger Action Month, so don’t miss your chance to get a ticket. You can have fun while also learning about hunger and food waste in the United States. Should you not wish to play, you are more than welcome to still donate (though it is super fun, so we highly recommend participating!).
10. Watch a Documentary
Documentaries are a great way to learn; some of our new favorites include Seaspiracy and Kiss the Ground, but be sure to check out this list for more suggestions.
11. Learn How Hunger Affects Different Communities
Move For Hunger has created helpful guides to walk through food insecurity and food waste. Our team has also put together well-researched resources that share how hunger disproportionately impacts women, African-Americans, the LGBTQ+ community, and seniors, among others. Read more about them here.
12. Test Your Knowledge with Our Quiz
We developed a new quiz just for Hunger Action Month to test your knowledge on hunger. Do you have what it takes to be a Hunger Fighting Hero? Take the quiz here!
Spread the Word
13. Follow us on Social Media
The best way to stay on top of what’s going on at Move For Hunger and to share it with friends and family is to follow us on social media. We’re on most networks -- Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, TikTok, and YouTube! On these platforms we post informative videos, news about upcoming events, and shoutouts to movers and communities helping us end hunger and food waste.
14. Shop for Swag
Want to rock your Move For Hunger pride and raise awareness for our organization? Check out this link to find apparel, bags, accessories, and more. You can also receive a FREE “Fighting Hunger” t-shirt by making a $50 donation today!
15. Post Assets/Articles on Social Media
You can let others learn about hunger facts by spreading the word about our articles via your social media! Be sure to check out the hunger stats in your state, they may surprise you. (Don’t forget to check out our accounts, linked above).
16. Become an Advocate
Speaking your mind about policies related to food is a great way to get involved to create change while also educating others on such an important topic! One way to do so is by reaching out to elected officials. Learn more ways you can advocate, and why you should, here.
17. Talk with your family and friends about the hunger crisis
Not many people know the severity of the hunger crisis in the United States, so it’s also important to make sure your loved ones are aware of the state of hunger. You can start the conversation by asking them questions about hunger, like:
- Are you aware that there are thousands of food insecure people in our very town/county? (you can find out how many food insecure people and children live in your state/area by going to this interactive map by Feeding America!)
- Did you know 43% of food waste occurs at home? What are some ways we can reduce our food waste?
- Did you know that if we recovered half of the food wasted in the US, we could feed everyone 3 meals per day, every day?
- What groups/demographics do you think are most affected by food insecurity?
- Who knows what/where the closest food bank or food pantry is?
- Did you know it would only take $19 billion to feed everyone who is hungry in the United States? Does anyone want to guess how much of the U.S. military’s annual budget that is? (p.s. the answer is 2.6%)
Make sure to check out the blogs linked in #10 to learn more about hunger and how it impacts our communities.
Reduce Food Waste + Live Sustainably
18. Donate to your Local Food Bank
The easiest way to reduce your food waste is to donate the food you aren’t going to use (or donate food in general). Non-perishable items such as peanut butter, pasta, rice, canned fruit, and beans are just a few items that you can donate to a food bank near you. Not sure where any are located? Use this Food Bank Search to find locations in your state.
19. Make a Zero Waste Recipe
Not sure how to reuse leftovers and reduce the amount of food you purchase that goes uneaten? Each month we create a zero-waste recipe, courtesy of our in-house chef, Ruth, with sustainability tips and tricks! You can check out those recipes on our blog under the Recipe of the Month category!
20. Do a Food Waste Activity at Home
Ever forget about the leftovers in your fridge? We thought so - throwing out expired food is frustrating, especially considering how confusing the dates listed can be! Check out this list of fun food waste activities that will help you keep track of what is in your pantry, refrigerator, and freezer (bonus: there is an explanation of Sell By, Best By, and Use By dates!)
21. Read About Food Waste
Did you know that 35% of the food produced in the United States goes unused or uneaten? Learn other shocking food waste statistics and find out about the economic and environmental impact of food waste.
22. Learn about Easy Ways to Reduce Food Waste at Home
We mentioned above that 35% of food produced in the United States goes unused - but did you know that 43% of that food waste occurs at home? Luckily, there are some easy ways you can help reduce your waste at home! From understanding “sell by” dates to recycling correctly, you can learn about 8 different tips to reduce food waste here.
23. Grocery Shop Sustainably
There are so many ways to shop sustainably that this is an easy one to add to the list! By utilizing reusable grocery bags over plastic ones, avoiding plastic containers, buying local, recycling, buying the “ugly” fruit, and so much more, you can help cut back on food waste. For more hacks for sustainable shopping, check out our TikTok and Instagram Reels - we love sharing new ideas!
24. Grow Your Own Garden
Starting your own garden can seem super intimidating, but with a little time and education, you’ll have a backyard full of fruits, veggies, and herbs! Additionally, having your own garden is a great way to be environmentally friendly, since growing your own food cuts back on pesticides and herbicides, air pollution, and fossil fuels! Learn how to start a garden here.
25. Start a Compost
Composting can be a great way to reduce the amount of food you waste and create nutritious soil for your backyard or garden. The point of composting is to recycle your kitchen scraps by turning them into healthy dirt that is perfect for use in your garden. Check out our blog that discusses 4 different ways you can compost at home!
26. Donate Your Food When You Move
Our Donate Your Food When You Move Program is the initial program that started Move For Hunger - and the program that has helped us donate over 23 million meals in 13 years. It’s super easy - when you’re clearing out your pantry and cabinets during your move, put all of your unexpired, non-perishable items into a box and drop them off at your local food bank!
27. Donate to Move For Hunger
Making a one-time donation is a really quick and easy way to help Move For Hunger get supplies we need to rescue food and run food drives. Interested in continuously supporting Move For Hunger and even earning some awesome perks? Donate each month to support us in our work to end food insecurity - even just $25 means 63 people can eat. Donate here!
28. Set up a fundraiser for your birthday.
It’s super easy to do! Follow the Facebook prompts to support a cause for your birthday, and type in Move For Hunger in the search bar.
29. Set your Amazon Smile to support Move For Hunger.
For eligible purchases through AmazonSmile, the AmazonSmile Foundation will donate 0.5% of the purchase price to the customer's selected charitable organization.
30. Fight Hunger by Participating in Restaurant Givebacks!
Move For Hunger reached out to a handful of restaurants to participate in a restaurant giveback throughout September, and we got some amazing responses! By going to any of the restaurants or buying from the brands here, you can also help fight hunger - and try some amazing food!