At the end of the year, many people contribute to charitable organizations that they feel connected to, whether it’s local or national. With year end approaching, here are a few options before the tax year runs out!
Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution Day
Galya and I are Jamie’s FRD Ambassadors here in Orange County, California, and we host multiple events surrounding Food Revolution Day, each May. Last May, we hosted dozens of families at a local gym, teaching them about fruits and veggies that they’d never seen before, shared the simplicity of grilled veggies, and taught about backyard gardening, all while entertaining them with food related projects and games.
From the FRD website:
In a nutshell, we believe that food skills are among the most valuable things you can ever learn. Every child should learn about food, where it comes from and how it affects their bodies. And everyone should be able to learn lost or forgotten food skills whether at home, at school, at work or in the community. While the main aim of Food Revolution Day is to raise awareness on behalf of Jamie’s foundations and partners, for those that can and do fundraise, 100% of net funds raised through Food Revolution Day go to food-education projects.
In a way it sounds silly, but people who actually cook tend to be healthier, slimmer, and fitter that those who can’t, won’t, or don’t cook.
Obesity and the diseases of our modern day lifestyle can only get better through education, and it starts with the kids.
The Orange County Rescue Mission & Village of Hope
Here in OC, the Orange County Rescue Mission helps people get off the street, clean up their act, learn job skills, and get educated. At the Village of Hope, the lives of men, women, kids – whole families – are transformed.
From the website:
The Village of Hope, a 192-bed transitional housing program for homeless men, women and children, opened in March 2008 with the arrival of 30 men from the Rescue Mission’s shelter in Santa Ana. The Children’s Dream Center, a 6,000 square foot center located on the Village campus, was completed three months later in July and the Rescue Mission began admitting single homeless women with children and intact families.
I’ve been to the Mission’s Village of Hope several times, and while you think ‘heartbreaking,’ you leave warmed from the inside. It does give hope, but more than that, it produces results.
The OC Rescue Mission does great things in the community. I was recently involved with their Chili Van, and I got to pass out bowls of chili to the hundreds of men, women, and children in the downtown Santa Ana area. It was more than just food to them, they came to talk, laugh, and let the kids play in a safe and welcoming environment. I was touched, as well.
Nutrition Science Initiative (NuSI)
Galya and I have a passion for what we call Real Food (hence the book, right?), but it’s not enough to just think or say Real Food will fix everything. It must be studied, and the studies must be good! …and that takes funding.
Many of the studies that drive our government’s poor advice are based on studies funded by the very organizations that are creating the foods contributing to our problems! …OR are funded by the drug companies that swoop in to rescue us after we get sick, fat, or both!
From NuSI’s website:
NuSI doesn’t do the research, but they will fund the studies that Big Food, Big Drug, and Big Government won’t!
Your Local Food Bank
Finally, remember that there are people all around you without enough to eat, including families with kids. Feed them through your local church or food bank.
You can find your local food bank, at FeedAmerica.org
Happy New Year!
Roland and Galya
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