It has always been a personal pet peeve of mine that so much time and effort goes into saving the children in one third world country or another, with celebrities donating their time to show you how desperate and hungry these kids are.  While I have no doubt they truly are desperate and hungry and in need of help, what peeves me is that there are plenty of children in our own country who are equally desperate and hungry, yet the big push in our country has always been to help those abroad. 

Finally, tonight, I saw a commercial for an organization whose purpose is to take care of the kids here!  And I say, it’s about darned time!  While Oprah and Bono and Jennifer and countless others are tugging at our heartstrings in hopes that they’ll also loosen our purse strings for an emaciated child in a foreign country who smiles for the camera when they are given food and medical care that were paid for by foreigners, countless children are starving and dying in our own country, and frankly, for all of our culture and advancements, that, to me, is purely criminal!  If we can’t afford to take care of our own, we have no business sending money, food and drugs overseas to take care of someone else’s!  Start here, then branch out!

Not only am I pleased to see that there ARE organizations who are working hard to end hunger here, but that the small, local efforts I see in the form of food banks and religious groups who join forces to feed the homeless are really just the tip of the iceberg.  Clearly, they have been out there, working quietly to help improve things for the millions who are starving, without the help of the famous (and sometimes infamous) and the piles of money that are poured into television commercials every day.  In fact, I find it a lot more impressive that they don’t waste money on expensive media campaigns to do their good. 

Up to now, I’ve directed my philanthropy towards rescue organizations for animals because at least I know that the donations I make will be used to make things better here!  It may take a bit more effort and some serious research on my part, but I’m happy to know that I can help make a difference in more ways than just buying one of the food bags at my local Von’s. 

I will be very happy to support the No Kid Hungry organization.  They seem to have a variety of ways to help feed the children and give them a real chance at a better life through school lunch programs and summer lunch programs.  How many times did I tell my kids that they needed a healthy breakfast if they wanted to do well in school?  How many kids out there don’t have a parent who insists on good nutrition and regular meals? 

Solving a problem begins with taking responsibility for doing whatever you can to help.  You don’t have to be a star organizer to make things happen.  Each of us can give money if we have it or time if we’re able, or, in the case of this organization, support the people who support them.  Shop at farmers’ markets.  patronize participating restaurants.  It looks like they’re still putting things in place, but in the meantime, I know the food banks are always accepting donations.  Find out what they need and add a couple of items to your weekly grocery list.

As I find more information about what we can do to help organizations such as No Kid Hungry, local food banks and such, I will start posting them here.

I believe that, to be a truly complete person, we each need a purpose and we each need a cause.  That’s not to say that we can’t have more than one of each, but one is a good start!  

If I had my way and the means, I would make sure all children had regular healthy meals and all animals found loving homes.  I have a huge amount of respect for the people who are dedicating a large part of their lives to these causes and will do my best to support their efforts. 

My gratitudes tonight are:
1. I am grateful for people who organize efforts to make this world (and especially our country) a better place for man and beast.
2. I am grateful that I am able to, in my own small way, support those who get the ball rolling.
3. I am grateful for those who are helping me practice my healing arts.
4. I am grateful for habits which make me, no matter how tired I might be, complete tasks I have set for myself.
5. I am grateful for my job and the things it allows me to do.

Love and light.

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