Feeding The Hungry – Part 1

May 21st, 2008

Recognizing Hunger In Your Neighborhood

Produce

This will be a series over the next few weeks about a subject that too many of us try hard not to think about, and which too many believe does not impact their immediate neighborhood or region. People in America are going hungry, and for a number of reasons from apathy to pride to a real shortage of government funding, are not being fed. If you don’t think it affects you or your town or county, you’re sadly mistaken.

This series is about ways to tackle that problem head-on, and perhaps build a network of friends and neighbors who will help. Not a church-based group, or a government program, or something officially sponsored in ways that can end up harming the effort over time. Just people – the more the better – making sure that no one inside their sphere of influence goes hungry. The very BEST people to spearhead such projects are homesteaders, primarily due to our strong and energetic commitments to our own self-sufficiency. We’ve lots to offer, and everyone can benefit.

My family homesteads in the deep countryside, but not all successful homesteaders are rural dwellers. There is a huge urban homesteading movement that has been growing steadily over more than a decade, from the days when old inner-city neighborhoods full of boarded-up, badly neglected but once gracious homes were offered for sale for practically nothing to upwardly mobile Yuppies who would fix them up and turn the neighborhoods around. In many cities this movement has revitalized neighborhoods dramatically, and their mixed race and income status has not hampered efforts to form neighborhood solidarity and outreach.

On that level we rural homesteaders seem to be somewhat lagging behind, as we simply don’t have a lot of close neighbors and tend to be quite a bit more isolated, at least in the early years. I’ve been trying hard to promote the idea of changing that by networking with like-minded neighbors as well as old-timers, getting involved in local school and community projects, volunteering here and there, joining the County Chamber, offering extension courses, etc. Sure, we’ve more miles to travel (and with the price of gasoline lately, that can be a significant barrier to physical networking), but we’ve also got more skills and resources to offer than your average city-dweller.

Food issues are increasingly coming to the political foreground with food shortages and riots spreading across the world, increasing costs, poor farming practices, etc. Worse, many of those issues overlap energy issues – costs of fuel, transportation, chemical farming, pollution, etc. So I’m going to devote some posts here to those issues, and have added some food links to the blogroll that specialize in the broad overlapping political issues as well. I hope my readers will visit those sites regularly and get involved as much as possible in designing solutions from the homestead (urban or rural) that will help to address those issues.

For my part, I’m going to open Part 2 of this series with a description of hunger projects I’ve been involved in through the years, the better to promote my current project later in the series, one begun as one of my very first networking efforts after we moved to our mountain homestead 16 years ago.

“This Is America. No One Should Go Hungry.”

Posts to This Series:

Feeding the Hungry – Part 1
Feeding the Hungry – Part 2
Feeding the Hungry – Part 3

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One Response to “Feeding The Hungry – Part 1”

  1. Hunger in America: The New Reality at Wise Living Journal on August 9, 2011 7:10 pm

    [...] homesteaders can escape it themselves as well as help out their neighbors. A 3-part series titled Feeding The Hungry lists and describes some innovative anti-hunger programs we can not only contribute to, but could [...]

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