Tag Archives: ending hunger

McGovern, Kennedy, Neal to join Western Mass. hunger march


Hunger March to Support Families in Need

McGovern to Kick Off 7th Annual Monte’s March in Springfield!

Last Year’s March Raised a Record-Breaking $150,000 for Local Hunger Relief!

Next Monday, November 21, Congressman Jim McGovern will kick off the 7th annual “Monte’s March,” a 43-mile two-day walk as part of his anti-hunger push in Western Massachusetts.

Congressmen Joe Kennedy III (MA-04) and Richard Neal (MA-01) will be among those joining the event.

The march is aimed at helping to increase awareness about hunger in local communities and help Massachusetts families in need this thanksgiving.

“As we prepare for Thanksgiving, there are many Massachusetts families who are struggling just to put food on the table,” Congressman McGovern said. “To bring our communities together and raise awareness to help families in need, we’ll be kicking off the seventh annual Monte’s March, the longest-yet at 43 miles across Western Massachusetts. Hunger is something that touches families across the Commonwealth, but together, we can help to ensure that every family has access to the healthy meals they need this holiday season.”

Joining Congressman McGovern for the full 43 miles will be the founder of Monte’s March, WRSI The River radio host Monte Belmonte, as well as Andrew Morehouse, the Executive Director of The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts.

Also joining part of the march will be Congressmen Richard Neal and Joe Kennedy III; State Rep. Aaron Vega; State Rep-Elect Solomon Goldstein-Rose; students from Holyoke Community College, Greenfield Community College and The Greenfield Center School; and local mayors, and other community leaders.

This year’s hunger walk will be the longest yet at 43 miles, starting on Monday with stops in Springfield, Chicopee, Holyoke, and Northampton. The walk will finish on Tuesday with stops in Hadley, Amherst, Sunderland, and Greenfield.


WHAT: Monte’s March, a 43-mile anti-hunger march across Western Massachusetts

WHEN: Monday 11/21 at 7:00AM

WHERE: March Starts at Friends of The Homeless. 755 Worthington St., Springfield

The march continues Monday with stops in Chicopee, Holyoke, and Northampton

On Tuesday 11/22 with stops in Hadley, Amherst, Sunderland, and ending in Greenfield



o 7:00 am – Depart from Friends of The Homeless. 755 Worthington St. Springfield
o 8:30 am – Arrive at Chicopee City Limits
o 9:00 am – Arrive in Chicopee Falls
o 10:00 am – Arrive in Downtown Holyoke
o 11:00 am – 2:00 pm – Finish first day, walking down Northampton Street to Northampton
o 6:30 pm – Fundraising event at The Northampton Brewery, 11 Brewster Ct, Northampton
o Note: Throughout the day, the march will be joined by Holyoke Community College students


o 6:00 am – Depart Northampton Office, 94 Pleasant Street.
o 7:00 am – Arrival at Route 9 in Hadley near Mi Tierra
o 8:00 am – Arrival at Whole Foods in Hadley
o 9:15 am – Arrival in Downtown Amherst
o 10:30 am – Arrival at Amherst Survival Center
o 12:00 pm – Arrival in Downtown Sunderland
o 1:15 pm – Arrival at Chandler’s Restaurant at Yankee Candle for Lunch
o 2:30 pm Arrival at Route 5 & 10 north joined by students from Greenfield Community College and The Greenfield Center School
o 5:00 pm: Arrival in Greenfield
o 5:30 pm or 6:00 pm: Completion of march at Seymour The Pub, 5 Bank Row, Greenfield.


Congressman Jim McGovern on Trump and SNAP

Back at Rose’s shack: Behold the terrific tuber! … Jim has been fighting for the hungry/food insecure his entire political life! pic:R.T.

Full Text of Congressman Jim McGovern’s Opening Statement on the House floor:

“After 18 hearings, what have we learned?

“We’ve learned that the SNAP program is a powerful tool for improving nutrition, insulating families against hardship, and lifting people out of poverty. It is effective, and it is efficiently run.

“The very modest benefit – which averages about $1.40 per person, per meal – helped to keep over 10 million people out of poverty in 2012, including almost 5 million children.

“So when I reflect on lessons learned from our hearings on SNAP during the 114th Congress, I think about the overwhelmingly supportive testimony we have heard from witnesses about the structure of the SNAP program and its ability to reduce food insecurity among our most vulnerable constituents.

“We’ve learned that charities do great work, but they can’t do it alone.

“We’ve learned that it’s a bad idea to radically change the SNAP program. It is working as intended. Not once have we heard from our witnesses that block granting SNAP will reduce hunger or strengthen this program. In fact, we’ve heard the opposite.

“And if we want to talk about improving access to food, we should be discussing ways to increase SNAP benefits. If anything, the average benefit of $1.40 per person, per meal is too low.

“The Recovery Act temporarily increased SNAP benefits and we saw an increase in food expenditures by low-income households, a reduction in food insecurity, and improvements in diet quality, especially among children.

“We ought to find ways to increase access to food by piloting the use of SNAP benefits online, strengthening employment and training programs, expanding SNAP education, incentivizing the purchase of more nutritious foods, we ought to address the issue of the “cliff,” among many other things.

“All of that would require an increased investment. But I think the return on investment would be enormous.

“I have no idea what a Trump Administration coupled with a Republican Congress means for the future of SNAP and other safety net programs.

“Quite frankly, I am worried. I spend a lot of time on this stuff. I spend a lot of time with people on SNAP. They don’t fit a stereotype. Many are unemployed – and many work. The majority who benefit from SNAP are kids and senior citizens.

“These are good people; they are our neighbors. And yet, too often, they are ridiculed, and their plight is belittled in the halls of this Congress. That is wrong.

“So, after 18 hearings, we have learned, from both majority and minority witnesses, that SNAP is not only a good program, but a very good program. It works.

“And, if next year, the Republican leadership wants to block grant or cut the program or put more hurdles in place to deny people a benefit to put food on their table – be prepared for one hell of a fight. Because this is a fight worth having.

“No one – and I mean no one – should go hungry in the United States of America.”

TOMORROW! Sat., Oct. 22 – Celebrate World Food Day! At REC Community Farmers Market – University Park!



Sat., Oct. 22 – at Main South’s Crystal Park (aka University Park) – Join REC to celebrate …


… with a slate of events scheduled to highlight:

healthy food choices

food justice

food accessibillity for all!

Learn new ways to celebrate food and promote sensible, just food policies for Worcester and Central Mass!

There will be:

Food Tastings!


Face Painting!

Kids Games!


Events Sponsored by:

Main South Community Development Corporation

Worcester Food Policy Council

Regional Environmental Council (REC)

University of Massachusetts Medical School



What is World Food Day?

A global campaign to draw attention to and celebrate healthy, affordable foods produced in a humane, sustainable way and to fix the food system by:

Promoting safer, healthier diets

Supporting sustainable and organic farms

Reforming factory farms to protect the environment

Supporting fair working conditions for food and farm workers

World Food Day is a day of action against hunger!!!

Tomorrow people around the world come together to declare their commitment to eradicate hunger in our lifetime.

Because when it comes to hunger, the only acceptable number in the world is zero.

World Food Day celebrates the creation of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) on October 16, 1945 in Quebec, Canada. First established in 1979, World Food Day has since then been observed in almost every country by millions of people.

Why care about hunger?

Because the right to food is a basic human right.

In a world of plenty, 805 million people, one in nine world wide, live with chronic hunger. The costs of hunger and malnutrition fall heavily on the most vulnerable.

60% of the hungry in the world are women.

Almost 5 million children under the age of 5 die of malnutrition-related causes every year.

4 in 10 children in poor countries are malnourished damaging their bodies and brains

Every human being has a fundamental right to be free from hunger and the right to adequate food. The right to adequate food is realized when every man, woman and child has the physical and economic access at all times to adequate food or means for its procurement.

Because we can end hunger in our lifetime. It’s possible. The world produces enough food to feed every person on the planet. In September 2000, world leaders signed a commitment to achieve eight Millennium Development Goals …

Since then:

40 countries have already achieved the first target, to halve the proportion of people who suffer from hunger

In addition, over the past 20 years, the likelihood of a child dying before age five has been nearly cut in half, which means about 17,000 children are saved every day.

Extreme poverty rates have also been cut in half since 1990.

The challenge is significant, but these results show us that when we focus our attention, we can make big strides.

Because the cost of neglect is too high.

No one in the world should have to experience hunger. In addition to the cost of human suffering, the world as a whole loses when people do not have enough to eat. Hungry people have learning difficulties, are less productive at work, are sick more often and live shorter lives.

The cost to the global economy because of malnutrition is the equivalent of US $3.5 trillion a year.

Hunger leads to increased levels of global insecurity and environmental degradation. Ending hunger is not just a moral imperative, but also a good investment for society.

Because it can happen to anyone. Even in the U.S., one of the richest countries in the world, one in seven Americans – 14.3 percent – does not have enough to eat.

Nutritious food can be expensive, making a balanced diet a luxury for many.

Loss of a job, a family tragedy, poor health, or an accident can make anyone, anywhere, go hungry in a moment.

Globally, extreme climate events, war, or even financial crisis can dramatically affect a person’s ability to feed themselves and their families.

Without social safety nets, resiliency measures and good policy in place, these small and large events can set off a cycle of hunger and poverty.


From REC:

We need YOUR help getting the Main South YouthGROW Urban Farm ready for fall!

Join us on through the end of October on Mondays and Wednesdays from 2-5 pm and help us pull crops and harvest produce that will be sold on the REC Mobile Farmers Market!

Questions? Email Bettny Mazur at farm@recworcester.org



LAWRETA KANKAM, YouthGROW Junior Staff photos:REC

From REC:

We are excited to welcome our newest YouthGROW Junior Staff! Lawreta is a Junior at South High School in Worcester and just completed her first year in YouthGROW.

Lawreta was hired as Junior Staff this fall beause of her excellent leadership abilities, passion for youth employment, urban agriculture and community education. Congratulations to Lawreta on her new position!

Congressman McGovern praises Urban Institute report on Teen Hunger … and REC Farmers Market Schedules

Report: 6.8 Million American Teens Struggle with Hunger, Impacting their Health and Academic Achievement

Congressman Jim McGovern spoke on the House Floor recently to address teen hunger as part of his continued push to raise awareness during Hunger Action Month.

Congressman McGovern praised two new reports released by the Urban Institute which highlight the millions of teenagers who face hunger and the challenges that they and their families confront every day.

The research in the Urban Institute reports shows that the food budget is one of the first things pared down when times get tough for a family.

Under such conditions, these households can become food insecure — that is, they struggle to acquire enough affordable, nutritious food to healthily feed the whole family.

Using Current Population Survey data, food insecurity expert Craig Gundersen recently estimated that 6.8 million young people ages 10 to 17 struggle to have enough to eat, including 2.9 million who have very low food security.

The ramifications of food insecurity are innumerable, but looking specifically at teenagers, the report notes that teenagers are at a critical stage of their development and that food insecurity undermines their physical and emotional growth, stamina, academic achievement and job performance.

Full Text of Congressman McGovern’s Speech on Teen Hunger:

“ … I rise to speak about the widespread problem of hunger among teenagers.

“While our nation’s recovery is progressing, seven million teens remain food insecure, and we know they often face additional hardships.

“Today, the Urban Institute is briefing Members of Congress and their staff on two new reports that highlight these circumstances and explore how teens cope with hunger.

“Among a number of troubling conclusions, the report finds that teens fear the stigma of being hungry and often refuse to accept food or assistance. They skip meals and sometimes turn to dangerous behaviors just so their parents or siblings can eat. They often feel the need to bear the responsibility for feeding their families.

“Teenagers deserve to have a normal childhood. They should be focused on school and developing their passions – not worrying about where their next meal is coming from.

“I encourage all of my colleagues to read these reports and join me in working to end hunger now.”


REC HELPS FEED YOUR FAMILY! Check out their REC FARMERS MARKETS! In all Worcester neighborhoods!








Worcester needs a REAL FOOD HUB!

By Rosalie Tirella


I love my city, but we have to deal with our hunger problem …

What Worcester needs badly!!: a TRUE FOOD HUB! Just like they have in Greenfield! A store in the city open 7 days a week, 9 – 5, a building, a physical place to shop like Price Chopper or Shop Rite … only filled with locally sourced produce that typically wouldn’t be sold in supermarkets. A food hub is just like a supermarket, only it sells local farmers’ less-than-perfect produce – for way CHEAP! Way way less $$ than the supermarkets and our high-end farmers market, here, ironically, in our inner city – by Kelley Square!!! Kelley Square – home to so many poor people, refugees, immigrants – DIVERSITY! The Worcester of tomorrow! You don’t see our future at this boutique farmers market by Kelley Square. You see … gentrification. It’s an affront to the real neighborhood and its people!

Did you know…Farmers throw away veggies that aren’t ready for prime time! These “rejects” are still amazingly tasty and healthy – fresh from the good earth! FOOD HUBS answer the question: Why not give our working poor, our immigrants a chance – a place! – to buy these homeless, kitchen-less vegetables and fruits? The working poor and immigrants are not patronizing the high-end farmers market any ways, and they often live out of walking distance from produce-selling supermarkets … so no one loses customers. It’s an entirely different customer base – the people in my neighborhood! The folks in all of Worcester’s inner-city neighborhoods!

Let’s do the right thing!

We can’t let politics or a fake, self-obsessed pretend little girl/real-life bitch (I’ve asked around! no one in the city seems to really like her, despite her relentless p.r.) kill this project! Get in the way of A REAL PHYSICAL FOOD HUB FOR WORCESTER! Our kids – all kids! – need to grow up healthy and strong!

20160730_155547-2 photos: Rosalie Tirella


…until the FOOD HUB IS A REALITY (staffed/run by REC???)…

Farmers Market 1-1-1

Mobile Market-1

Farmers Market 1-1-2

On World Food Day Congressman McGovern Renews Call to End Hunger In U.S. and Around the World

Congressman Jim McGovern, Ranking Member of the Agriculture Committee’s Subcommittee on Nutrition, and Democratic Co-Chair of the House Hunger Caucus and the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission, released yesterday the following statement in recognition of World Food Day. Established to commemorate the founding of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) in 1945, World Food Day also serves as a time to bring attention to global development and humanitarian programs that fight hunger, malnutrition, and extreme poverty:

“With the advances of today’s global agriculture, there is no excuse for the world hunger we currently see. Whether in the U.S. or anywhere else in the world, no child or family should have to wonder where their next meal will come from.

“Unfortunately, tens of millions of individuals in America and hundreds of millions across the globe face that challenge every day.

“In America alone, 48.1 million individuals suffer from food insecurity, including 15.3 million children. Globally, 805 million people feel the effects of hunger day in and day out. This is unacceptable.

“We, as a nation and as a global population, need to acknowledge that the right to adequate food is a basic human right. 

“Solving hunger must be a shared goal. In the U.S., we need to strengthen our investment in SNAP and other anti-hunger programs, and continue to work with a broad coalition of anti-hunger organizations.

“Globally, we need to work with our international partners, the business community, NGOs and universities to effectively combat, and eventually end, hunger across the world. 

“Together we are making progress in fighting hunger as the world is beginning to meet anti-hunger goals. The United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals include the goal of ending hunger by 2030. Solving hunger is possible in our lifetime and I am proud to support this ambitious goal.

“I will continue to fight against hunger to ensure that everyone in the U.S. and around the world has access to the basic human right of adequate food and food security. On this World Food Day, I urge my fellow members of Congress to join me in this fight to end hunger now.”

– Jim McGovern



About the Conference:
The Food for Good Conference was inspired by Congressman James McGovern’s  tireless advocacy on behalf of lower-income Americans who struggle to meet their families’ basic nutrition needs every day, and by the everyday debates and decisions, triumphs and frustrations that we face in the field as we  stretch resources and forge new partnerships to provide ample, healthy food for our communities.

The conference is the result of efforts by a steering committee of anti-hunger leaders and service providers across the state.
The one-day conference begins with an analysis of the problem of food insecurity in Massachusetts and the nation, and an overview of current state-wide initiatives already underway.

The morning information session sets the stage for the focus of the conference, Cultivating Sustainable Solutions to Hunger in Massachusetts.
The conference is designed around cultivating solutions because the steering committee felt strongly that the event should serve as a launching pad for immediate and direct action and problem-solving, both for individuals in their respective roles as service providers, policy shapers and community leaders, and collectively, as a strong and united state-wide network.
Each workshop is designed around a critical goal that has been identified by food security advocates and invites participants to learn about some strategies that have been effective, what barriers might exist, and determine together what the next steps would be to expand or replicate those models and overcome the barriers to achieving the workshop goal.
Another aim of the conference is to share effective and innovative programs from around the state and to encourage interregional dialogue and connections.

To that end, we have included a morning and afternoon session entitled “Promising Practices in the Fight Against Hunger,” which provides participants with the opportunity to interact and learn from a wide range of practitioners, organizers and service providers. Attendees will move through a series of short presentations followed by small group discussions at tables featuring ground-breaking programs and projects.
Our lunchtime keynote speaker is Dr. Deborah Frank who will highlight how critical food security is to child nutrition and health. And we close the day by sharing the priorities identified during the workshops, and leave energized by closing remarks from Congressman James McGovern.

Ending hunger shouldn’t be a controversial thing. It shouldn’t be something that we ignore but, rather, a goal that we embrace. Unlike ending war, ending hunger is an achievable goal. It’s something we can do if we muster the political will to do so.”

Congressman James McGovern, June 2014

For more information, contact Holly Kosisky at 
hkosisky@communityaction.us or (413) 376-1179