I drove to work this morning with my window down, enjoying the crispness of the fall air while sipping on a hot pumpkin spice latte that a total stranger bought for me in the Starbucks drive-through. This small act of kindness made my day.
It also got me thinking. There are people right here in my state, in my city, who can’t afford to eat today. There are seniors trying to decide if they should buy their medications or buy groceries. There are parents who are desperately trying to determine how they’ll put food on the table this week. There are children dreading the weekend because they know they won’t be able to eat again until they get to school on Monday.
How are seniors supposed to stay healthy if they can’t nourish and protect their bodies? How are parents supposed to get ahead in the workplace if they’re tired and upset all the time? How are children supposed to succeed in school if they are so hungry they can’t concentrate?
A little bit of perspective goes a long way. Take Thanksgiving, for instance. It’s my favorite holiday. I look forward to watching football with my brothers, sharing a cocktail with my dad and grandpa, and watching my mom bounce around the kitchen, focused and singing. I look forward to laying on the floor with my husband, laughing because our stomachs are too full to move. How lucky are we that our biggest concern is whether we overcook a turkey or we have too many leftovers?
As the weather gets colder and the holidays approach, my hope is that our hearts will get a little warmer. Let’s work together to make sure that everyone in New Mexico can enjoy a Thanksgiving dinner.
I believe that hunger is a fixable problem, and if we all pitch in, we can make a big impact. It’s as simple as writing a check, donating canned goods or offering your time to help the food bank sort boxes. The best part about helping is that it doesn’t have to cost much. Even $10 can help the food bank share the love.
So in the spirit of giving, please join me in making a difference in the lives of hungry people. Consider donating to Roadrunner Food Bank. And, enjoy the holidays and the blessings that we so often take for granted!
Annamarie Ciepiela Henton is a volunteer of Roadrunner Food Bank and is a member of the Food Bank’s Communications Advisory Committee.