4,500+ Volunteers to Pack 1.5 Million Meals for 9/11 Day Of Service

4,500+ Volunteers to Pack 1.5 Million Meals for 9/11 Day Of Service

Courtesy of LongIsland.com

On September 11, 2023, more than 4,500 New Yorkers will spend the 22nd anniversary of the 9/11 tragedy supporting the community, by packing 1.5 million healthy, non-perishable meals aboard the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum.  The meals will be donated by the event’s organizer, the nonprofit 9/11 Day, that day to City Harvest and Food Bank For New York City to support individuals and families at risk of hunger across the New York City area.

According to Feeding America, one in four Americans experience food insecurity every day.  

Now in its 7th year, the New York City Meal Pack for 9/11 Day, which will be staged over the course of two days, on Monday, September 11, and Tuesday, September 12, has grown to become the largest volunteer service project held in America in observance of the 9/11 anniversary.

More than 120 companies from the NYC – NJ -CT area plan to send employee volunteers to the event, including major sponsors JPMorgan Chase, Citi, KPMG, Mizuho, FactSet, Fox Corporation, Major League Baseball, Intercontinental Exchange, Pfizer, Flagstar Bank, and Merrill Lynch. Helping 9/11 Day co-host this year’s NYC event are the 9/11 Memorial & Museum, City Harvest, Food Bank For New York City, NYC Service and New York Cares.

Nationally, the 9/11 Day Meal Pack program is being supported by AmeriCorps, the federal agency for national service and volunteerism, Citi, United Airlines, JPMorgan Chase, Reliance Steel & Aluminum Co., and KPMG.

day of service

20,000 Meal Pack Volunteers Will Pack More Than Six Million Meals Nationwide

Nationwide, the NYC Meal Pack for 9/11 Day is one of 18 large-scale volunteer service projects that 9/11 Day is staging this September, with support from the AmeriCorps, which oversees the nation’s federal volunteer service programs.  Across the nation, more than 20,000 volunteers, representing about 400 U.S. companies, prominent nonprofits, professional sports leagues, faith-based groups, military veterans and others, will join together in unity and in observance of 9/11 and Hunger Action Month, to pack a record 6.5 million meals for food insecure Americans.

All of the meals will be donated to local food banks, many of them affiliated with Feeding America.  9/11 Day is sourcing the food ingredients for the meals and receiving logistical support from meal packing partners US Hunger, Meals of Hope, Kids Around The World and The Pack Shack.

9/11 Day and AmeriCorps will be helping to support 9/11-related meal packing volunteer events for the first time on 11 college campuses, including at University of Alabama Birmingham, Illinois State University, Monroe College, Prairie View A&M University, Ross State University, University of New England, Boise State University, Harding University, Morgan State University, The Ohio State University, and University of North Georgia.

The nonprofit 9/11 Day was founded six months after the September 11, 2001, attacks by friends David Paine and Jay Winuk, who have dedicated their lives to transforming the anniversary of 9/11 into a nationwide day of doing good, in tribute to those lost and injured, and in honor of the many who bravely rose in service in response to the 9/11 tragedy.  Winuk lost his brother Glenn J. Winuk on 9/11. Glenn was an attorney and volunteer firefighter/EMT who was killed in the line of duty in the collapse of the World Trade Center South Tower.

9/11 Day Now America’s Largest Day of Service

In 2009, 9/11 Day successfully secured passage of legislation in the U.S. Congress, and a Presidential Proclamation, that officially established September 11th as an annually-observed National Day of Service and Remembrance under federal law, and which is now the nation’s largest annual day of charitable engagement. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s birthday is the only other federally designated Day of Service. Today, more than 30 million Americans participate in 9/11 Day annually by volunteering, making donations, and doing other “good deeds,” which many Americans now share through social media messages posted on September 11, using the hashtag #IWillFor911Day.

“The 9/11 Day observance is a powerful reminder of the extraordinary sense of unity we experienced after the attacks, and is an important, uplifting and appropriate way for millions of Americans to pay tribute through kindness and acts of service,” said Winuk.

“In the hours, days and weeks immediately following the 9/11 attacks, Americans were able to see that whatever differences we think we have pale in comparison to what we all share as human beings – our innate kindness, compassion and concern for the well-being of others,” Paine added. “9/11 Day is about rekindling that spirit of compassion, and bringing it forward in our lives as a reminder of who we really are as people.”

“Our lives have been shaped by how we, as a country, came together to respond in the wake of 9/11,” said Michael D. Smith, CEO, AmeriCorps, which provides opportunities for Americans of all backgrounds to serve their country, address the nation’s most pressing challenges, and improve lives and communities.  “Through a spirit of unity and an enduring commitment to our most cherished values, the 9/11 Day of Service provides Americans an opportunity to reflect, remember and take action, knowing we’re unstoppable when we stand together.”

More About 9/11 Day

The 9/11 Day observance was founded in 2002, inspired by the spirit of unity, service and shared humanity that arose in the United States and spread around the world following the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.  Today, the September 11 National Day of Service and Remembrance – also known as 9/11 Day – stands as a permanent tribute to those lost, injured, and sickened, and those who rose in service in response to the tragedy.  As the single largest day of service in the U.S., 9/11 Day reminds us that coming together in a spirit of kindness, no matter our differences, has the power to change lives and ultimately, our world.  For more information, please contact info@911day.org.

Learn More about Meals of Hope

Ready to make a difference in your community? To learn more about Meals of Hope, read more here. To get you or your organization involved in our next meal packing event, fill out our form here. We can’t wait to hear from you!

FFA members package 50,184 meals during Living to Serve Day

FFA members package 50,184 meals during Living to Serve Day

Courtesy of High Plains Journal
May 1, 2023

The blue corduroy jacket is a familiar symbol of the FFA organization, worn as part of official dress during most FFA activities. Recently at the South Dakota FFA convention in Brookings, as part of a SD FFA Living to Serve Day, members removed their jackets and rolled up their sleeves to help stop hunger in South Dakota.

This service project, supported by funds from Pioneer-Corteva, Rick and Sandy Osterday, and a grant from the National FFA Foundation exemplified the portion of the FFA motto which states “Living to Serve” by teaming up with industry to fund a Meals of Hope, hands on project that combats hunger. SD FFA members and Pioneer-Corteva staff measured, poured, sealed, and boxed 50,184 meals in assembly line fashion throughout the day-long event. Members stopped in between workshops and competitive events throughout convention and left the event knowing that by giving a few minutes of their time they would make a significant difference in the life of a person less fortunate than themselves.

“The FFA organization believes strongly in the fourth line of the FFA Motto “Living to Serve”, which is why we are very excited to receive funds from both Pioneer-Corteva as well as day of event manpower assistance and interaction from their staff,” says Sandy Osterday, presiden of the South Dakota FFA Foundation.

The SD FFA Foundation is proud to support Agricultural Education and the FFA’s mission to make a difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth and career success through agricultural education. For more information about the South Dakota FFA Foundation and South Dakota’s FFA programs, visit www.sdffafoundation.org or follow us on Facebook.

Students Pack 25,000 Meals for Charity

Students Pack 25,000 Meals for Charity

Courtesy of McDonald County Press
May 4, 2023

Students from McDonald County High School and the McDonald County FFA chapter, on April 27, partnered with the national organization, “Meals of Hope,” to pack 25,000 meals for people in need in the local area.

According to the organization’s website, Meals of Hope is a “nonprofit organization that is committed to bringing people together to fight the hunger epidemic.”

Meals of Hope is the only meal-packing organization prioritizing keeping food packed within the United States.

Emily Hutton teaches agriculture at MCHS and is the McDonald County FFA Advisor. She said these packages will go to local food pantries throughout McDonald County — Anderson, Noel, Pineville, and some local churches and other organizations.

“It’s going to be chicken and rice vegetable soup that we’re packaging. Each bag has six servings in it. So the kids are actually going to measure all the ingredients. We have to weigh it, seal them, put on our stickers and box them. Then distribute them to the community,” said Hutton.

According to Hutton, Meals of Hope sent all the supplies, and the students prepped and packaged the ingredients.

Students had five options to choose from. The project’s senior officers picked the dish they thought would be the most versatile and easiest to prepare. They settled on “chicken and rice soup” because it is the easiest to prepare.

Maggie Pratt is the McDonald County FFA chapter president. She has aspirations to study the field of poultry science after high school.

“This project was something we had heard about,” said Pratt. “So we did our research and kind of looked into it. And we thought, ‘Well, we really want to do this.'”

Braxton Bishop is the vice president of the FFA chapter. After graduation, he’ll attend the University of Columbia for animal science and plans to pursue a veterinary degree to treat large animals such as bovine and equestrian animals. Together with Pratt, they share ideas and collaborate on various projects.

“Anything she has a question on, we think about it together,” said Bishop. “She did all the paperwork for it, and I did the heavy labor.”

The students formed assembly lines along rows of tables with measuring spoons, weighing scales, funnels, and package labeling. There were 10-gallon buckets containing various blends of spices, rice, and dry vegetables. They placed them at the beginning of the tables, and students wore PPE and systematically passed the packets over to the following students. They were racing against the clock, and within four hours, 150 students packed 25,000 meals of chicken and rice soup. That is roughly 104 packages per minute.

This was an experience these students will never forget.

“We have never done this before,” said Hutton. “We hope that this tradition will continue for years to come.”

Learn More about Meals of Hope

Ready to make a difference in your community? To learn more about Meals of Hope, read more here. To get you or your organization involved in our next meal packing event, fill out our form here. We can’t wait to hear from you!

Courtesy of WGNSRadio

(Murfreesboro) Rutherford County government and Board of Education employees packed over 55,000 Meals of Hope on Saturday (3/18/2023). More than 150 volunteers gathered in groups to pack fortified pasta with tomato sauce that will be distributed to various non-profit organizations, food banks, charities, and ministries across Rutherford County.

Emily Cox, who helps facilitate the meal-packing events, said, “When we learned that one in six children in Tennessee face hunger every day, we knew we wanted to help somehow. We are so excited to partner with Rutherford County employees to pack meals to help feed Rutherford County.”

The Meals of Hope were distributed to local agencies as an economical resource that will provide nutritional solutions to aid in the fight against hunger. Each packet contains enough food to provide six meals.

Sonya Stephenson, Rutherford County Chief of Human Resources, noted that the county had representatives from Animal Services, Ambulance Service, Blackman Elementary, Blackman Middle, Blackman High, Buchanan Elementary, Building Codes, Cedar Grove Elementary, Central Magnet, Christiana Middle, Circuit Court Clerk’s Office, County Clerk’s Office, Circuit Judge Law Clerk, Correctional Work Center, Engineering, Finance, Human Resources, Insurance & Risk Management, Mayor’s Office, McFadden, Oakland High, Office of Information Technology, Riverdale High, Rock Springs Middle, Rockvale Elementary, Rockvale High, Rocky Fork Middle, Roy Waldron, Rutherford County Board of Education Central Office, Rutherford County Bus Drivers, Sheriff’s Office, Trustee’s Office, and Youth Services who volunteered their time to give back to the community they serve.

In addition, constitutional officers were present packing meals for their community: County Commissioner Jonathan Beverly, County Commissioner Hope Oliver, County Clerk Lisa Crowell, County Mayor Joe Carr, County School Board Chair Tammy Sharp, County School Board member Frances Rosales, and County Trustee Teb Batey. Mayor Joe Carr reflected, “This is an example of the greatest resource in Rutherford County, the people. We are fortunate to live in a community where neighbors help neighbors.”

Meals of Hope President and CEO Stephen Popper, said, “We are thankful and appreciative of the support provided by Rutherford County employees to help us combat the hunger epidemic.”

Meals of Hope is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization that is committed to bringing people together to fight the hunger epidemic. It was founded in 2007, and has packed over 80-million meals that have been donated to communities in need across the nation and around the world.

Learn More about Meals of Hope

Ready to make a difference in your community? To learn more about Meals of Hope, read more here. To get you or your organization involved in our next meal packing event, fill out our form here. We can’t wait to hear from you!

Billerica Company Packs Meals of Hope for Area Residents in Need

Billerica Company Packs Meals of Hope for Area Residents in Need

Courtesy of The Sun

BILLERICA — W.L. French Excavating Corporation recently partnered with Meals of Hope to pack 15,000 meals for struggling individuals.

Approximately 30 volunteers worked in groups to pack fortified macaroni and cheese that will be distributed within the local community with the help of the Merrimack Valley Food Bank.

“We feel a tremendous responsibility to give back to our community, and we do that in a number of ways,” said CEO Bill French. “Our entire team had a great time packing meals for a very important cause.”

Meals of Hope, a Florida-based charitable organization, developed five meals specifically designed for the American palate and added vitamins, minerals and proteins to supplement an unbalanced diet. Food packages are designed to address the need for an economical, nutritious solution to aid in the fight against hunger. Each packet contains enough food to provide six to eight meals.

“We are thankful and appreciative of the support provided by W.L. French to help us combat the hunger epidemic,” said Meals of Hope Director Jack Day. “These types of events make for a fun and rewarding day for the volunteers, and they help us deliver healthy meals to underserved individuals.”

Learn More about Meals of Hope

Looking to feed the hungry in your community? To learn more about Meals of Hope, read more here. To get you or your organization involved in our next meal packing event, fill out our form here. We can’t wait to hear from you!

Make Room for a New Holiday Tradition!

Make Room for a New Holiday Tradition!

Many people enjoy being involved with charities, especially during the holidays.

Over the years, we have seen families embrace Holidays Without Hunger as more than charity work. The event has become a family tradition.

“Some of our volunteers vacation in Southwest Florida and make Holidays Without Hunger a family tradition,” said Steve Popper, Meals of Hope’s President/CEO. “It is a great multi-generational event too, which provides a special family experience.”

We welcome you to start a new family tradition and join us on Dec. 15 (North Naples Middle School) or Dec. 22 (Lee Civic Center). Help us crush our goal to raise $100,000 and pack 1 million meals.

It’s a win-win: Your family spends quality time together while providing another family meals during the holiday season.

Please get involved by going to www.mealsofhope.org. Thank you! #HolidaysWithoutHunger