» Subscribe Today!
The Power of Information
Home
The Ledger - EST. 1978 - Nashville Edition
X
Skip Navigation LinksHome > Article
VOL. 35 | NO. 48 | Friday, December 2, 2011

As we feast, many children go hungry

Print | Front Page | Email this story

Well, the big Turkey Day is over, gobble gobble. Hope you had a good time visiting with friends and relatives, watching football and/or the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.

Or, like so many wonderful folks around town, I really hope you enjoyed your afternoon working at the soup kitchen or food bank, dishing out servings of turkey and dressing to the less fortunate. They are the ones who received the true Thanksgiving blessings. To you, my praise rings.

I usually write happy and upbeat, and I don’t intend my article to be gloom and doom, but I was reading an editorial in the local newspaper this morning that accidently set the mood. It was of the jaw-dropping number of children who go hungry every day, written by someone I consider a reliable source, Roger Simon, CDO of the Arkansas Food Bank.

Simon stated “there are an estimated 200,000 children in Arkansas that get up every morning not knowing if dinner will be waiting for them at the end of the day.”

I have five grandchildren, soon to be six, and to think that they would ever go to bed hungry is a picture I cannot conceive, not because it could never happen but because it hurts me. Honestly, sometimes I feel like a loser grandmother because they come here to visit for a few days and I don’t have the snacks they are wanting. Silly, huh?

When I was younger, I lived in Memphis and was always volunteering to do something with my leftover time. At one period, I worked with the welfare department, going into homes of SSI recipients making sure they were spending the funds correctly. One young lady is forever burned in my memory.

She was 23 years old, had five children, and lived in a run-down projects duplex. She did not have a job. She was a high school and, more-or-less, a societal dropout. Anyway, on the Tuesday evening I went to visit her and her children to make sure they had groceries (she had received her SSI check the Friday before), all they had was a cake. One cake won at the Cake Walk on Sunday afternoon at the nearby church. A piece of this cake, carefully doled out, was the children’s dinner every evening for the rest of the week.

What happened to the groceries and the SSI check? Unfortunately, she cashed it and it went to her boyfriend because he wanted a grill. For the record, the boyfriend did not live there, so the grill was not present, nor any food that might be cooked on it. Just one lonely cake and five young children, two of them toddlers.

I don’t know the answer to fixing society’s hunger and homeless ills. I do know, however, that without programs that fund school systems to ensure every child gets a breakfast and lunch, the problem would be overwhelming. In addition, I also know that without food banks and community soup kitchens, supported by local churches, that the problem would be undefeatable.

However, I don’t think we are yet to that point. I have hope and faith in the generous American people, and there are many, who are willing to change the problems Simon faces on a daily basis (and that I now have etched in my memory). We have to do more. Quit depending on our government for yet another program, and open our hearts and hands, and do more. We think our budget is stretched? Try stretching a cake to five hungry children for dinner for a week. Regardless of the circumstances, it is society’s fault and society’s problem.

Well, if you did have some of that bird left over and you really don’t want to slap a few pieces on two slices of bread with mayo gushing out, I have a solution for you. Try this delicious, healthy turkey soup.

Turkey Vegetable Soup

1-1/4 cups sliced carrot

1 cup sliced celery

3/4 cup chopped onion

1 cup water

1 tablespoon fresh Basil, chopped

2 tablespoons Tomato Paste

2 (10-ounce cans) Chicken broth

1 (15-ounce can) Tomatoes, chopped, un-drained

1/4 teaspoon pepper and salt to taste

2 cloves garlic, minced

2-1/2 cups chopped cooked turkey breast (skinned)

1 (10-ounce) package frozen English peas, thawed

1 (10-ounce) package frozen Okra, thawed

Combine first eight ingredients in a large Dutch oven. Add next three ingredients, stirring well to combine. Bring to a boil; cover, reduce heat and simmer 30 minutes. Stir in turkey, peas, and okra; simmer, uncovered, until vegetables are done.

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter & RSS:
Sign-Up For Our FREE email edition
Get the news first with our free weekly email
Name
Email  
TNLedger.com Knoxville Editon
RECORD TOTALS DAY WEEK YEAR
PROPERTY SALES 0 0 0
MORTGAGES 0 0 0
FORECLOSURE NOTICES 0 0 0
BUILDING PERMITS 0 0 0
BANKRUPTCIES 0 0 0
BUSINESS LICENSES 0 0 0
UTILITY CONNECTIONS 0 0 0
MARRIAGE LICENSES 0 0 0