I am a simple girl. I don't have big wants.
When I heard that I could donate my birthaversary to No Kid Hungry, I thought, "This. This is what I should do for a 7 year anniversary and a 36th birthday."
Here is my birthday wish.
I wish that no child in this country, this awesome and wonderful and diverse country should go to bed tonight without food. That no child should know the pain of hunger. That no older brother or sister should have to forego dinner just so that the younger siblings should have more to eat. That no child should come to school so hungry that they cannot learn.
I wish that more people could open their eyes to the realness of poverty in this country, to the fact that making $7.67 (the minimum wage in Florida) is not enough in today's economy for a parent to buy food for their kids. I'm a numbers girl, so let's do the math - $7.67 x 40 hours per week = 306.80 per week (that's if you can find a full-time position) gross, if you take out money for insurance and taxes you are left around $240 per week. Now imagine that you have to pay for daycare, groceries, doctor's visits, rent, bus tickets and you are very truly the working poor.
I can tell you from experience that the state and federal government do not give away food stamps and health insurance, during my brief 4 months on unemployment I made too much (at a whopping $275 a month) to receive any benefits at all.
According to the census numbers that were released today, there are 16.1 million children in this country living in poverty - that's 1 in every 5 kids. Poverty is a cycle. If children are hungry, they are not learning, if they are not learning, they become the next in line of our country's under-educated, minimum-wage workforce that are dependent on the government to meet their basic needs.
I wish that this cycle ends with this generation.
Feeding children should be this country's number 1 priority.
For my birthaversary, I have decided to take action against child hunger in a very real way. I have teamed up with No Kid Hungry to help end the child hunger epidemic. Any donation that you make will help me reach my $1000 dollar goal. For each dollar that they raise, No Kid Hungry can make sure that a child has 10 meals.
So, even if you didn't think about getting me a birthday or anniversary gift this year - chipping in a buck or two will help me share my birthaversary with children from all over the country.
"This is my commandment: Love each other in the same way I have loved you." ~ John 15:12