Join me, Congressman Tim Ryan and Rev. Lewis Macklin for the Press Conference at 11:30a.m., Monday, October 31st at Sav-A-Lot Grocery store, corner of Gypsy Lane and Belmont Avenue.
AREA PUBLIC OFFICIALS, COMMUNITY LEADERS
JOIN NATIONAL FOOD STAMP CHALLENGE
Will Live for a Week on Food Stamp Budget
And Present Local Premier of Documentary “Food Stamped”
(Youngstown – October 27, 2011) Area public officials and community leaders will join national religious leaders, Members of Congress, and Senior Obama Administration officials in the national week-long Food Stamp Challenge in an effort to focus attention on the realities of hunger and poverty. From October 31 through November 7, 2011, those taking the Food Stamp Challenge will eat only the food they can purchase with $31.50, the average weekly Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program (SNAP) allotment for a single adult.
Local participants include Congressman Tim Ryan, State Senator Capri Cafaro, State Representative Sean O’Brien, Mahoning County Commissioner John McNally, Brian Corbin and George Garchar from the Diocese of Youngstown, Bonnie Deutsch Burdman from the Youngstown Area Jewish Federation, Reverend Lewis Macklin from Holy Trinity Missionary Baptist Church, Joe Rossi, Executive Director of the Area Agency on Aging, and many others from throughout the Valley. Congressman Ryan and other participants will kick off the challenge at a press conference on Monday, October 31, at 11:30 a.m. at the Save-a-Lot grocery store at the corner of Gypsy Lane and Belmont Avenue in Youngstown. Mike Iberis, Executive Director of the Second Harvest Food Bank will also attend the press conference.
This local challenge is held in conjunction with the fourth annual national Fighting Poverty with Faith mobilization. Fighting Poverty with Faith, co-founded by the Jewish Council for Public Affairs, Catholic Charities USA, and the National Council of Churches, includes more than 50 national faith organizations brought together by shared traditions of justice, to act on behalf of those living in poverty in America. Congressman Ryan is one of nine Members of Congress, and the only Member of the Ohio delegation, to participate.
The Food Stamp Challenge is to engage people of all faiths to attack the pervasive and urgent problem of hunger in America, particularly here in the Valley, which has the third highest rate in the country of families who experience food insecurity,” said Bonnie Deutsch Burdman. “If we are to get serious about ending hunger, it cannot be an abstract idea for us. We must urge Congress to maintain the SNAP program and we must understand the struggles of feeding a family with kids on the current SNAP allotment.” Burdman said.
At the conclusion of the week-long challenge, participants will re-convene at 7:00 p.m. on Monday evening, November 7, at the Jewish Community Center, 505 Gypsy Lane, Youngstown, for the local premier of the award-winning documentary film, “Food Stamped.” Food Stamped follows nutritionist Shira Potash and her documentary filmmaker husband Yoav as they attempt to eat a healthy, well-balanced diet on a food stamp budget.
Shira teaches healthy cooking classes to elementary students in low-income neighborhoods, most of whom are eligible for food stamps. In an attempt to walk a mile in their shoes, Shira and Yoav took the Food Stamp Challenge four years ago, eating on roughly one dollar per meal. Through their adventures, they consulted with Members of Congress, including Congressman Ryan, food justice advocates, nutrition experts, and people living on food stamps to take a deep look at America’s broken food system.
The film and program on November 7 are free and open to the public. For further information about the Food Stamp Challenge or about “Food Stamped,” contact Bonnie Deutsch Burdman, Director of Community Relations/Government Affairs, Youngstown Area Jewish Federation, at email@example.com, or call at 330-770-8702 (cell)/330-746-3251 (office).