Connecticut Foodshare is our 1% Partner for November and December
More than 50 million Americans are food insecure, meaning that they don’t regularly have access to enough food and often go hungry. Approximately 13 million of those people are children. Meanwhile, 108 billion pounds of food is wasted in the United States each year. That’s about 40% of all the food in America that ends up in the garbage. The dissonance of these two facts is heartbreaking. That’s why Earth Animal has been contributing for more than ten years to Connecticut Foodshare through our Mitten Project and why Connecticut Foodshare is our 1% partner for November and December. It’s our way of helping to put food on tables instead of in the trash and to help feed hungry children.
Earth Animal’s Mitten Project, started fifteen years ago by our founder, Susan Goldstein, helps to fund Connecticut Foodshare (formerly The Connecticut Food Bank) which helps to feed families that are food insecure. With The Mitten Project, Earth Animal Retail Store customers can donate $5 to Connecticut Foodshare from November 1st-December 31st and fill out a mitten cut-out to be hung in the store’s holiday window. With this project, Earth Animal has been able to contribute tens of thousands of dollars to help eliminate local family hunger.
Many adults who are food insecure earn too much money to qualify for government assistance, but not enough money to be able to feed their families and also pay for necessities like housing, healthcare, and utilities. Sadly, children in these families suffer significantly as they often don’t have enough nutritious food to eat. Children living with food insecurity can have less success in school and frequently have to repeat at least one grade, have more developmental impairments, and are more likely to struggle socially and behaviorally. Many families struggling with food insecurity face the devastating decision to give up a beloved pet because they can’t afford its food. Many food pantries also provide pet food for people needing a little help during tough times – and that helps keep pets in the homes where they are loved. Organizations like Connecticut Foodshare and Feeding America, the country’s first and largest food bank, help bridge the gap when salary doesn’t stretch far enough to include healthy meals. And by partnering with the food industry to reduce food waste, they also tackle the problem of good food being tossed in the trash.
What can you do to help? If you are near our store in Westport, CT, come on in a buy a mitten to decorate our windows. You can also donate on our Go Fund Me page, knowing that Earth Animal will match your donation dollar-for-dollar to make an even bigger impact for local families. Last year we raised $38,000. With your help, we will be able to make a huge impact. Please know in your hearts that you have helped struggling families.
While we focus these efforts on our Connecticut neighbors, we recognize that food insecurity is a problem that faces our whole country. Feeding America is a nationwide organization that provides food to millions of hungry Americans all year. We encourage all our customers who may be too far away to shop at our Westport store during the Mitten Project to work to end hunger in their local communities by donating to Feeding America.
Earth Animal couldn’t look away from so many of our neighbors who suffer from food insecurity, especially at this time of year that many associate with food and abundance. We can all lend a hand. It’s what the dogs would want.