The Alliance and My Next Step into Advocacy as a Hunger Fellow

March 23, 2017

Margot Nitschke, Bill Emerson National Hunger Fellow, Alliance to End Hunger

MargotNitschke_picEarlier this month, I was thrilled to join the Alliance to End Hunger for the policy portion of my Bill Emerson National Hunger Fellowship.  The Emerson Hunger Fellowship, a program of the Congressional Hunger Center, works to end hunger by developing leaders and building capacity for hunger issues nationwide. The program incorporates work around a number of issues pertaining to hunger in the United States, including aspects that encompass both anti-poverty and racial equity lenses. This speaks both to the Congressional Hunger Center’s commitment to work in pursuit of equity, and to their understanding of intersectionality of issues as key components to ending hunger.

Hunger Fellows spend the first five months of the program participating in field work in communities across the country. Here, they build the capacity of their field organizations while developing a nuanced understanding of U.S. hunger and poverty issues. For my own field experience, I worked with La Casa Norte, a Chicago-based homeless service agency. While at La Casa Norte I had the opportunity to create a nutrition program for youth clients. I also supported the volunteer initiatives of Northwest Food Partners Network, the local Hunger Free Community. I look forward to experiencing how the supportive services and intentionality of care provided at La Casa Norte will guide and fuel my advocacy work at the Alliance to End Hunger.

Following the field placement, Hunger Fellows return to Washington D.C. to work on hunger policy at the national scale. This year’s cohort is working with advocacy groups, think tanks, faith based organizations and government agencies. My role here at the Alliance to End Hunger will be to research and build support for hunger as a racial justice issue. More specifically, I will create briefings and trainings that frame hunger through the lens of racial justice. This will broaden the Alliance’s reach and support the development of intersectional frameworks within the Alliance to End Hunger.

I am excited to build my advocacy skills and contribute to the vital work being done at the Alliance to End Hunger, and its mission to build the will to end hunger everywhere.

Margot Nitschke is a current fellow through the Bill Emerson National Hunger Fellowship.  She graduated from St. Lawrence University in 2016 with combined bachelor’s degrees in sociology and environmental studies.  Margot will be working with the Alliance to End Hunger through July 2017. She can be reached at mnitschke@alliancetoendhunger.org.