Several community leaders participated in last weekend’s Food Stamp Challenge, which replicated the weekend food insecurity many children experience when school lunches are not available.
Participants were asked to spend $14.93 on groceries for seven meals (Friday dinner through Sunday dinner). The $14.93 represents the maximum monthly allotment for SNAP benefits of $192 per person, or $2.13 per meal.
Andy Reed, director of development, Naples Children & Education Foundation, Founders of the Naples Winter Wine Festival, participated in the challenge, and said, “It wasn’t as hard as I thought to eat enough, but it was almost impossible to eat healthy. A lot of carbs and salt.”
Reed’s challenge meals consisted of:
Friday dinner (for two) –Tostito’s Pizza ($1.40 for two people)
Saturday breakfast – pack of Ramen with one fried egg; half banana ($1.16)
Saturday lunch – eight-piece nuggets from Chick-fil-A (free with promotion)
Saturday dinner – single macaroni and cheese cup ($1.00)
Sunday breakfast – two eggs; half bagel with butter ($2.10)
Sunday lunch – black beans and rice ($1.69)
Sunday Dinner – baked potato with gravy packet and free pack of hot sauce and pepper from Chick-fil-A the day prior ($2.00)
As Reed said, quality vs. quantity of food was the biggest challenge. Many children, veterans and elderly individuals face that same challenge every day, eating processed foods out of necessity.
Please contact us to learn more about how you can help provide fresh, healthy food to struggling individuals in your area.