Yesterday morning, food stamp users gathered together with members of Congress, representatives of the Obama Administration, rabbis, priests, and reverends outside a Capitol Hill Safeway grocery store to kick off the Fighting Poverty with Faith (FPWF) Food Stamp Challenge.
NCC President Rev. Peg Chemberlin and other other faith leaders were joined by: White House Special Advisor to the President Valerie Jarrett, Congresspersons Emmanuel Cleaver, Barbara Lee, Jan Schakowsky, Eleanor Holmes Norton, and Donna Christensen, as well as Deputy Secretary of Agriculture Dr. Kathleen Merrigan. They broke into teams and joined a shopping experience guided by local food stamp recipients, using the national average weekly food stamp allotment: $31.50. The event closed with an interfaith sending forth prayer.
This national Food Stamp Challenge kick-off event was the first of over 35 events nationwide planned by the 50 organizations that make up Fighting Poverty With Faith.
A joint effort co-chaired by the National Council of Churches, the Jewish Council for Public Affairs and Catholic Charities, and involving 50 faith-based organizations, the Food Stamp Challenge is a component of Fighting Poverty with Faith’s 2011 mobilization: “Working to End Hunger.”
Click here to read more about the Food Stamp Challenge and sign up. (It’s not too late!) You can also see whether there is a Fighting Poverty with Faith event happening near where you live. Finally, if you are a social media user, you can follow the action on Twitter at #foodstampchallenge or keep up with us on Facebook.
With Faith in an Abundant Future,
Director, National Council of Churches Poverty Initiative