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Hunger Awareness Week 2020: Day 1- Aarik Williams

Good morning, friends!

So I won’t lie, this is not a week I am excited about or looking forward to continuing through this Friday. This week is Hunger Awareness Week here in Indianapolis, a tradition we are in our 3rd year of promoting here at Faith Hope and Love Community, Inc.

Much of the week is our Hunger Challenge from Mon-Fri of only eating one meal a day, namely dinner. While it may be one thing to do this on occasion during the week, having to do it throughout the week because you have no choice is another matter, especially for someone who enjoys food as much as I do!

There a couple objectives here, the first being to raise awareness of the fact that nearly one in 5 in Indianapolis is food insecure, and that number is somehow worse for children!

From HealthyPeople.gov:
“The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) divides food insecurity into the following 2 categories:
Low food security: “Reports of reduced quality, variety, or desirability of diet. Little or no indication of reduced food intake.”
Very low food security: “Reports of multiple indications of disrupted eating patterns and reduced food intake.”

We have a lot of people who are either going hungry or have very limited access (and likely knowhow to use) to fresh, healthy foods, which obviously has all types of harmful impacts on children and adults alike with their effectiveness in their relationships and work.

The other objective is to increase our sympathy and empathy for those for whom this isn’t a 5-day event. See attached the one meal I spent a good 15 minutes preparing yesterday. I was looking forward to it all day, praying that it would be enough to fill me up after not eating until dinner and that it will hold me over until tonight for my next meal.

As I finished my salad, I was already getting a signal from my stomach that I should stop eating, but I absolutely plowed through knowing I wouldn’t eat again for another 24 hours. It made me stop and consider what if I weren’t eating reasonably healthy food, but simply whatever I was able to get ? Would I have exercised some “discipline” to refrain from eating too much unhealthy food, or would I have eaten everything I could, not knowing where my next meal is coming from?

I was irritable during the day not because of legitimate hunger, but simply because I wasn’t allowed to eat. On Day 1. I am certain I will have worse uglinesses about myself, my thought processes and my feelings toward others revealed to me and to share with you as this week progresses.

Aarik WilliamsHunger Awareness Week 2020: Day 1- Aarik Williams