Seven Organizations Unite to Pick a Fight Against Hunger
December 1, 2015
This originally appeared on the ConAgra Foods Foundation website.
ConAgra Foods Foundation convenes experts to launch first-of-its kind tool with goal of 500,000 service hours, promoting strategic volunteerism as a way to impact U.S. hunger
Just in time for Giving Tuesday, a day dedicated to giving back, the ConAgra Foods Foundation today unveiled Hunger Volunteer Connection. This initiative seeks to arm volunteers and organizations with tools to take action to end hunger in the U.S., an issue that impacts 48 million people across the country.1
HungerVolunteerConnection.org, the initiative’s companion website, is a first-of-its-kind one-stop shop, bringing together volunteer opportunities and tools to help organizations and individuals find ways to end hunger in their own communities. One of the site’s key features is the largest searchable source of U.S. volunteer listings to fight hunger, which is often referred to as “food insecurity” by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. It also includes a suite of tools to help organizations enlist skills-based volunteers, benchmark best practices and more.
“After two decades of investing in programs and research to put solutions to child hunger within reach, we have learned that the more people become aware of the severity of food insecurity, the more they want to help,” said Kori Reed, vice president, Cause and Foundation, ConAgra Foods. “Volunteers are often unclear about how to get involved. This disconnect creates a large gap in untapped support for organizations. There is now a way to address that gap by connecting people to opportunities and organizations to tools to engage more volunteers – it’s HungerVolunteerConnection.org.”
During the past year, the ConAgra Foods Foundation convened six national organizations with expertise in volunteerism, civic engagement and hunger to collaborate – with the Foundation and with each other – and align with a singular goal of infusing 500,000 hours of volunteer service in the fight against hunger by September 2018, with at least half of the hours classified as strategic, more impactful service.
“The power of the initiative lies in the collaboration of the partners,” said Reed. “Each organization is respected for its own mission-based work. Together, we set to alter engagement in the hunger issue, create a call to action, as well as magnify how volunteerism can make a difference and pave the way for greater results and impact.”
As part of the initiative, partner organizations worked in teams to create content, design and develop a new suite of tools, and pilot-test complementary national webinars as well as in-person trainings in select cities. The combination of training and tools, are designed to enhance an organization’s capabilities to engage youth and families; initiate citywide efforts; and bolster skills-based volunteering and advocacy on issues connected to hunger. In the process, the partners have built strong relationships and continue to meet regularly to leverage their collective expertise toward making a difference in the hunger space.
The HVC collaborating partners are:
- Alliance to End Hunger: engages diverse institutions and organization to build the public and political will to end hunger. alliancetoendhunger.org
- Cities of Service: works with mayors and other local government leaders to address city challenges through citizen engagement and volunteerism. citiesofservice.org
- New York City Coalition Against Hunger: an advocacy organization focused on moving families beyond the soup kitchen to sustainable solutions. nyccah.org
- Points of Light: the world’s largest organization dedicated to volunteer service – engages millions of people to take action that is changing the world. pointsoflight.org
- Taproot Foundation: expert in skills-based volunteering, drives social change by leading, mobilizing, and engaging professionals in pro bono service. taprootfoundation.org
- VolunteerMatch: the web’s largest volunteer engagement network, connecting good people with good causes. volunteermatch.org
To learn more, visit HungerVolunteerConnection.org. To join the conversation, follow #Collaborate4Good on social media.
1Household Food Security in the United States in 2014, ERR-194, USDA, Economic Research Service(Sept. 2015).
Source: ConAgra Foods