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What does Hunger look like in Maine?

How often does one think about where their next meal is coming from? Was there ever a time when you hit the grocery store and you feared not having the money to pay for the contents of your cart? Did you know that children experience developmental impairments, such as language and motor skill deficiencies, when they are without the nourishment they require?

Feeding our communities is not an endeavor that can be taken care of entirely by one person, one company or organization or even one city or town. It is the collective effort of entire communities throughout the state that can make the necessary impact food insecure families so desperately need. The painful truth is that the statistics are so overwhelming that it’s hard to imagine that everyone will be fed and well-nourished this year! In fact, according to Feedingamerica.org, Maine reports that 1 in 7 people struggles with hunger, 1 in 5 children struggles with hunger, and it would take $108,086,000 more per year to meet their food needs. This is based on a $3.45 per meal estimate taken in 2016 (two years ago)!! Think about the last time you visited Hannaford or Shaw’s and walked out thinking about how much money you spent for the very little you brought home. Seriously, 3 bags can equate to $70 depending on what you get or how healthy you eat. That is why, at New Dimensions FCU, we work tirelessly to raise money to help alleviate the stress that adults and children endure when there is a shortage of food.

Each year we hold numerous bake sales, harvest fests, holiday pie sales, book sales, bottle drives, raffles, and many other events in our attempt to raise as much money as we can toward Maine’s Ending Hunger Campaign. And we certainly do not do this alone; we have a tremendous number of members who happily donate to our cause and some even donate without buying anything—they do it because they want to help!

In 2017, NDFCU raised nearly $5,000 to help end hunger and are pleased to announce that we have distributed all the money raised right here in our own local communities. This year’s recipients were those organizations that have food programs in place. Among the awarded are The Mid-Maine Homeless Shelter, Spectrum Generations, The Waterville Food Bank, The Augusta Food Bank, and Bread of Life in Augusta.  This money will ensure the continuance of these very necessary food programs in our local area.

We are at it again this year and with the merger of Taconnet, we have even more staff and members to contribute to our mission. To help raise money in 2018 for our 2019 awardees, follow us on Facebook or visit our website for updates on our fundraisers or if you’d like to suggest a new fundraiser you’d like to see, contact us at info@newdimensionsfcu.com.

Be a part of the solution by making tomorrow’s community well-fed, healthier, and a time when the words “food insecure” no longer have meaning in the lives of our children.