Nutrition Newbie: Alternative Sweet Tooth Treats

“Nutrition Newbie” is a series focused on basic nutrition information and tips.

Special Blog Post By: Bryanna Peace, Second Harvest Food Bank Nutrition Intern

I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream! But, what if we chose to scream for something a little more nutritious while still satisfying that sweet tooth craving? At Second Harvest Food Bank we’re all about great recipes that are nutritious, easy and completely delicious. These simple sweet treats are great for hot summer days and will keep the whole family feeling healthy and happy.

Children love sweets, and chances are, if you have little ones, you’ve probably heard your fair share of pleading for sweets. A fun way to help your kids want sweet treats that are good for them is letting kids help in the kitchen. It’s an easy way to teach your children about eating healthy and boosting their confidence by teaching them new skills. The American Institute for Cancer Research has a guide that talks about the benefits of cooking with your kids, practical food safety for children and tips on how to give them appropriate tasks. All these recipes are kid friendly and are a great way to get your kids involved in the kitchen.

Coconut Water & Berry Popsicles

Berries are great sources of antioxidants and are naturally sweet. Coconut water is full of electrolytes and helps keep you hydrated.

In a popsicle mold drop in about 5-6 cut up pieces of your favorite berries. We suggest strawberries, raspberries and blueberries. Next, pour in coconut water until ½ inch from the top. Freeze overnight and enjoy the next day!

Tip – when choosing a coconut water be sure to look for something that is completely natural, with no added sugar and not from concentrate. Also, if you don’t have a popsicle mold you can use small paper cups and popsicle sticks.

Frozen Grape Skewers

With only two ingredients, this is a recipe you’ll want to make again and again. Grapes contain a lot of water and the minerals potassium, manganese and iron. Potassium in known to help with high blood pressure and all the water will help keep you hydrated on hot days this summer. So, make a large batch and enjoy them for days on end.

You’ll first need skewers, preferably with a pointy tip to easily slide through the grape. After washing the grapes through cold running water, slide one grape at a time onto the skewer until you have a long row, this tends to be about 7-9 grapes per skewer. Once completed, snip off the pointy end of the skewer with a pair of scissors to keep them safe for kids. Lastly, sprinkle lemon juice over the skewers, making a delicious sweet and sour combo. Place in the freezer overnight and enjoy!

TIP – You can use any fruit for frozen skewers, like blueberries or mango pieces, and it’s a great way to use fruit that it is about to become overly ripe and go to waste in your fridge.

Peach Yogurt Popsicles

Juicy peaches are one of the best parts about summer – especially if they are locally grown. One serving of peaches provides fiber, vitamin A, vitamin C and many more beneficial nutrients. They are naturally very sweet and can be bought fresh or canned.

Blend together 1 cup of plain yogurt, 2/3 cup of peaches and 1/3 cup orange juice until smooth with a creamy texture. Pour mixture into popsicle molds and freeze overnight. This is a perfect summer treat but can also be great for breakfast on the go!

TIP – For extra protein, use plain Greek yogurt instead.

We hope you enjoy these recipes and have fun cooking with your family. Don’t be afraid to get creative and swap out new fruits or add your own flair! Do you have any healthy sweet treat recipes your family loves? We want to hear about them. Let us know in the comments below!

***Read our past Nutrition Newbie posts.

Meet Vicky Martin

Special Blog Post featuring Vicky Martin of St. Joseph’s Family Center in Gilroy, as told to Matt Mastrangelo of Second Harvest Food Bank.

Second Harvest’s Grocery Rescue Program is a collaborative effort between the Food Bank, local retailers, and select partner agencies. It is part of the Food Bank’s many food rescue efforts and has seen tremendous growth since its inception. In 2015, the program connected nearly 4 million pounds of perfectly good food with our neighbors in need.

My name is Vicky Martin and I’m the Pantry Coordinator at St. Joseph’s Family Center in Gilroy. We’re one of Second Harvest’s southernmost partner agencies and are part of their Grocery Rescue Program.  We operate at our main location plus nine offsite pantries, and we’ve seen the need for food grow and grow. Families and individuals are seeking more services than ever. Thankfully, as the need has increased, Second Harvest has been there to help.

Years ago we reached out to two local retailers for donations of food close to its “use-by” or “sell-by” date. The food is perfectly good, sometimes it has weeks left before the quality changes, but the perception is that it’s not. Unfortunately we wound up only getting some baked goods and canned food.

When we became part of Second Harvest’s Grocery Rescue Program, we saw tremendous change. The number of stores we worked with increased, as did the number and variety of items donated. We are now able to distribute meat, dairy, beans, eggs, yogurt, and fresh produce thanks to the donations we get through the program.  These are items our clients couldn’t normally afford. Getting these is very helpful and they add a spice to life. You add variety to life when you’re not just having the same one or two things all the time. And that adds to the quality of life, in addition to being nutritious.

Grocery Rescue is a marvelous program. We are so busy distributing food and managing our pantries, we just don’t have the time to negotiate with stores. That’s where the Food Bank steps in and establishes a relationship with the donating stores. It’s hard to convince stores to keep this food fresh and safe so we can pick it up and others can benefit once it’s donated.  Second Harvest makes that happen. They also manage pickup and delivery schedules. It’s incredibly helpful. Now we get nearly a truckload every day. We pick up some of it in a refrigerated truck that the Food Bank purchased for us.

We’ve gotten a lot of feedback about how much people appreciate the items they receive from the Grocery Rescue Program. We’ve had people write letters about how much they appreciate the food, both from a nutrition perspective and due to the variety, and we couldn’t get them this perfectly good food without Second Harvest.

Summer Feeding Sites Provide Free Meals to Kids

Special Blog Post By: Cindy McCown, Second Harvest Food Bank Vice President of Community Engagement and Policy

Summer is here and that means thousands of kids in Santa Clara and San Mateo counties won’t have access to the free and reduced-priced meals they rely on during the regular school year. Making sure their kids have enough healthy food to eat during the summer can be difficult for families already struggling to put food on the table. Second Harvest Food Bank is working to connect families to the nutritious food they need to thrive this summer. According to the Food Research Action Center’s Hunger Doesn’t Take a Vacation:  Summer Nutrition Status Report, the lack of nutrition and summer enrichment programs can result in negative health and development outcomes for children, including weight gain and a “summer slide” in learning. To address this, there are a number of resources available, including Second Harvest programs and more than 120 federally funded summer feeding sites where kids can get free meals.

You might ask yourself …How is this possible in such a wealthy area?  According to the California Food Policy Advocates, during the school year approximately 70% of low-income students participate in the school lunch program.  During the summer months, only about 20% participate in the summer meal program .  That’s why Second Harvest works closely with a wide range of community based organizations to create a network of summer feeding sites where kids can get a free meal and also connect families to the nutritious food they need to feed their kids this summer – that could be a bag of groceries from Second Harvest or a free meal through the federal Summer Food Service Program.

There are more than 80 sites in Santa Clara County and nearly 40 sites in San Mateo County where free meals are made available to any child who is 18 years old or younger through the federal Summer Food Service Program and the National School Lunch Program.  Some of the sites offer free breakfast, lunch, and an afternoon snack.  Second Harvest is working with a number of partners to offer meal sites where parents can eat with their kids, including YMCA Silicon Valley, San Mateo County Libraries – Big Lift Inspiring Summer Program, City of San Jose Public Libraries, Stanford Pediatric Advocacy Program, Ravenswood School District, and the California Summer Meals Coalition. These sites include selected schools and libraries in Atherton, East Palo Alto, Menlo Park, Redwood City, and San Jose. The kids’ meals are paid for through the federal Summer Food Service Program and the adult meals are covered by Second Harvest.

The federal Summer Food Service Program and the National School Lunch Program are two of many children’s nutrition programs funded through the Child Nutrition Reauthorization legislation.  Currently, our federal elected officials are reviewing proposals that will impact these programs for the next five years.  This summer, we will have elected officials visit sites to see first-hand how important these programs are to hungry children and their families.   The reauthorization is an opportunity for them to protect and make new investments to strengthen many children’s nutrition programs.   Let your elected representatives know how you feel about children’s nutrition programs!

For summer feeding sites and groceries, families can contact our Food Connection Hotline.

For information on summer feeding activities, contact Cindy McCown, VP of Community Engagement and Policy, at or 408-694-0018.

June Social Media Roundup

“Social Media Round-Up” is an ‘ICYMI’ compilation of the top hunger-related news articles and other interesting tidbits posted on our social media profiles.

  • The Surging Cost of Basic Needs, THEATLANTIC.COM
  • “One particularly worrying aspect of this is that low-income and middle-income families might be cutting back spending on food in order to compensate for rising costs in housing and health care.”

  • How Kids Learn Resilience, THEATLANTIC.COM
  • “In 2013, for the first time, a majority of public-school students in this country—51 percent, to be precise—fell below the federal government’s low-income cutoff, meaning they were eligible for a free or subsidized school lunch.”

  • 4 Women with 4 Very Different Incomes Open Up About the Lives They Can Afford, ESQUIRE.COM
  • Pretty Revealing

  • Mobile Pantries Get Fresh Food to Where People Need It Most, CIVILEATS.COM
  • “As providers of groceries, prepared meals, and nutrition education, food banks serve as a vital lifeline for people unable to access the type or quantity of food they need for a healthy lifestyle. Traditional food banks, however, do not reach everyone. That’s where mobile food pantries…come in.”

  • Food Banks Take on a Contributor to Diabetes: Themselves, NYTIMES.COM
  • Providing nutritious food to our neighbors in need is very important to us. We distribute more fresh fruits and vegetables than any other food bank in the U.S. We’re also putting a new Healthy Food and Beverage Policy that includes long-term goals like increase protein (including dairy) distribution, focus grain purchases on low-sugar whole grains, and distribute only healthy beverages.

  • 1 in 10 Cal State Students is Homeless, Study Finds, LATIMES.COM
  • “…one in five [Cal State students] doesn’t have steady access to enough food…”

  • School’s Out, but Lunch is Still in Session for the Summer, TAKEPART.COM
  • “…a report released last week from the Food Research and Action Center found that only about 16 percent of the kids who eat free and reduced-price lunches during the school year participated in federal or state-run Summer Nutrition Programs last summer.”

  • CSU Campuses Taking Action to Identify Food Insecurity, SCPR.ORG
  • “Nine California State University campuses are making plans this summer to help needy students apply for and use the Cal Fresh benefit (formerly known as food stamps)…The CSU campuses in Humboldt, Chico, San Luis Obispo, San Jose, Channel Islands, Fresno, Los Angeles, Northridge, and Long Beach are set to receive the funds.” This is great news!

  • California’s Skyrocketing Housing Costs, Taxes Prompt Exodus of Residents, MERCURYNEWS.COM
  • “The struggle to make ends meet became too much.” In a survey of our clients, 62% reported having to choose between paying for food and paying for housing.

  • Food Pantries Address a Growing Hunger Problem at Colleges, NYTIMES.COM
  • We are so proud to work with our community partners to establish food pantries at local colleges, like Gilroy’s Gavilan College, San Bruno’s Skyline College, and Redwood City’s Canada College.

  • Are Americans Eating Better? Income Inequality Still Has a Set at the Dinner Table, PBS.ORG
  • We are working hard to change this, especially with our new Healthy Food and Beverage Policy.

  • Ugly Mr. Potato Head Wants You to Give Imperfect Produce a Chance, MARKETWATCH.COM
  • “Ugly” fruits and vegetables are just as yummy and nutritious as the perfect looking ones.

    *** Don’t miss past Social Media Roundups.

    Giving Time: Lynn Crawford

    “Giving Time” focuses on the invaluable volunteers who donate more than 314,000 hours to Second Harvest each year, more than doubling the size of our staff.

    Special Blog Post featuring Lynn Crawford, Agency Office Volunteer, as told to Matt Mastrangelo of Second Harvest Food Bank.

    My name is Lynn Crawford and I’ve been volunteering at Second Harvest Food Bank for over six years.

    I volunteer in the agency office. Second Harvest has hundreds of so-named partner agencies. The partner agencies run their own places and they do the handing out of a lot of the food to the folks who need it.

    So, at the Curtner location we have the agency office. The people who run partner agencies can order food from the Food Bank online and those orders are prepped at night and ready for them to pick up as scheduled. I sort those orders out and handle the paperwork for them.

    The other thing the agencies can do while they’re here is visit our “shopping area,” which is loaded with assorted items. It’s all free, of course. When they’re finished “shopping” they give me a weight and list of what they took and I prepare their order in our database with that information and handle that paperwork. I get them to sign off on how much they took.  So, that’s basically what I do here, three days a week. I also handle donations as they come in, when I can.

    I like volunteering. It matches my value system. The Food Bank matches my values. I particularly like Grocery Rescue. I think that’s a great program. I hate to see that stuff just taken to the garbage, because there’s so much good food. I mean, you know a package of cereal where the outside package is torn, but the inside isn’t, you know, there’s no reason to throw that away. People need that food. So, I like that program. For a length of time I worked in the sorting of that stuff. For an old guy, it got to be too much, so I moved into the office.

    Finally, let me say, if you’ve ever wondered about volunteering at Second Harvest, you should definitely give it strong consideration. I love it.

    ***If you would like to volunteer at Second Harvest, visit

    Nutrition Newbie: Ugly Fruit Gets a Makeover

    “Nutrition Newbie” is a series focused on basic nutrition information and tips.

    Special Blog Post By: Elena Hollander, Second Harvest Food Bank Community Nutrition Manager

    At Second Harvest, we are so lucky to be able to distribute more fresh fruits and vegetables than any other food bank in the country! One reason we’re able to accomplish this is because farmers and grocery stores give us produce items that might be “cosmetically challenged.” Our produce could be a bit bruised, overripe, oddly shaped, or too big or small to sell in retail grocery markets.

    We LOVE these “ugly” fruits and veggies not only because they generally have the same nutrients and taste as their picture perfect counterparts, but also because they help cut down on food waste (40% of food in the United States today goes uneaten), are more affordable, and make meals much more interesting.

    That being said, sometimes it’s tough to convince people to munch on produce items like blackened bananas or apples with brown spots. That’s why we created this guide to giving ugly produce, particularly fruit, a makeover! Hopefully this will help you feel confident in enjoying ugly fruit, whether it’s from the Food Bank, a farmers market, your backyard, or it has simply aged a bit past its prime in your home.

    Overripe/Bruised Fruit

    Fruit becomes overripe when the starch starts converting to sugar. The good news is that this means that overripe fruit tends to be sweet and thus perfect for making healthy sweet treats. Another fun fact is that sometimes overripe fruit can have even more antioxidants.

    Here are a few types of recipes to use overripe/bruised fruit:

    • Jams- Jams can really be done with any overripe fruit, but are particularly good with berries and stone fruits like peaches and apricots, which are in season right now! Here’s a great website for some easy jam recipes that use these fruits.
    • Breads- Blueberry and banana bread are classic recipes and make a wonderful breakfast on the go or dessert.
    • Smoothies- Practically any overripe fruit can make a delicious smoothie. Just toss whatever you have in the blender with ice and water. You can even throw in some veggies, like a handful of spinach, if you want an extra shot of nutrients.
    • Sauces- Applesauce and pear sauce are great ways to use ripe apples and pears. Simply boil them with spices like cinnamon and nutmeg and then blend them until you get the desired consistency.
    • Popsicles/Ice Cubes- During these hot summer months, there’s nothing more refreshing than a cool fruit popsicle. Simply blend the fruit in the blender to the desired consistency, pour it into popsicle trays, and stick in a popsicle stick to let it freeze. You can save some of the blended mixture and put it into ice cube trays to make ice that adds a splash of color and fresh flavor to water.

    Oddly Shaped/Sized Fruit

    Don’t be afraid of fruit that is weirdly shaped or bigger or smaller than you see in the grocery store. It’s natural and healthy to have variation in sizes and shapes- just like with people! For fruit, unless it’s small because it was picked before ripening, the size and shape does not generally impact taste or nutrients.

    If you find oddly shaped/sized fruit unappealing, there are some easy ways to make that fruit look fabulous. Many of the same techniques we described for overripe/bruised fruit can be used, but you can also simply cut the fruit into nice shapes like circles or wedges. If you blend cut fruits into a colorful fruit salad, it makes it more enticing and you get a variety of vitamins in one plate!

    We hope this article has inspired you to see the beauty in ugly fruit! If you want an easy place to look up particular recipes for the ideas we mentioned, one website we like is EatFresh. We’d also love to hear from you- what are your ideas for using ugly fruit? Let us know!

    ***Read our past Nutrition Newbie posts.

    Shining a Spotlight on Our Partner Agencies

    Second Harvest provides food to nearly a quarter million people per month in our two counties.  This is largely possible thanks to our awesome network of nearly 330 partner agencies, including shelters, pantries, soup kitchens, children’s programs, senior meal sites, and residential programs, located as far north as Daly City and as far south as Gilroy.

    On May 13, 2016, we hosted our 10th Annual Harvest of Knowledge Partner Conference, sponsored by Oracle, in Redwood City. The conference was a day of learning and sharing new ways to connect with hard to reach clients, improve services, and celebrate our local leaders making a difference.

    Every year, we give out a handful of awards to shine a spotlight on partner agencies and individuals who do exceptional work in our community. Below are this year’s inspiring honorees.

    Putting People First Award
    “The Putting People First Award” recognizes one organization in each county who serve their community members in need of food with an exceptional level of customer service. Health Trust – Jerry Larson FOODBasket and Ravenswood City School District received this year’s award.

  • The Health Trust Jerry Larson FOODBasket is committed to strengthening the health of its clients by providing nutrition services and engagement opportunities for volunteers while maximizing donor and partners’ contributions. During our 16 years of partnership, this agency has provided services to our community members with respect and integrity. They spearheaded a senior brown bag program with fresh produce to four remote centers; have increased their hours of service; added a Saturday pickup for their AIDS Services clients; and have volunteers bring excess food to the Food Bank.
  • Ravenswood City School District has gone above and beyond to ensure their eight schools and community families are served in a very respectful and dignified manner. They distribute food twice a month to neighbors in need. They’ve also worked with Second Harvest to establish an emergency food pantry for their school families that can’t attend their distributions due to work or other obligations. Over the past three years, they have participated in the Summer Feeding Program at three of their school sites, working with a collaborative group of community partners to provide nutritious, hot meals to students and their parents/guardians during summer enrichment programs.
  • Outstanding Grocery Rescue Partner Award
    “The Outstanding Grocery Rescue Partner Award” recognizes one organization in each county that adheres to the terms of The Grocery Rescue agreement, including maintaining a set pick-up schedule, submitting reports on-time, and having a great relationship with their paired stores. In addition, there is usually something unique about the agencies chosen. This year, the award goes to Ecumenical Hunger Program and Sacred Heart Community Service.

  • Ecumenical Hunger Program’s mission is to assist local families and individuals who are experiencing economic and personal hardship. The organization has participated in the Grocery Rescue program for 4 years. They saw big growth in a year and a half, from partnering with one retail store to four retail stores.  EHP has dedicated staff drivers who are knowledgeable and provide great customer service and salesmanship to the stores.
  • Sacred Heart Community Service’s mission is to build a community free from poverty by creating hope, opportunity, and action. The nonprofit has excellent communication with both the assigned stores and the food bank. They consistently submit accurate and timely weekly reports and successfully train and manage volunteers. Dupe Thomas and her team are enthusiastic, caring, and dedicated to helping our neighbors in need.
  • The Ultimate Food Connector Award
    “The Ultimate Food Connector Award” recognizes one organization in each county that stands out in connecting clients to all of the food programs they may be eligible for. This year’s award recipients are SparkPoint at Skyline College and the Salvation Army – Silicon Valley.

  • Pantry partner SparkPoint at Skyline College has been a Food Bank partner for six years. They help college students with nutrition, financial planning, and accessing all the benefits they may be eligible for so they can stay in school and reach their full potential. SparkPoint advocates and follows up with eligible clients to make sure they get the benefits they applied for with the Food Bank and the County.
  • The Salvation Army Silicon Valley has been a Food Connection Outreach partner for eight years. They help with safety net needs – food, rental ,and utility bill assistance. They host the Food Bank and County Eligibility Workers on site to expedite CalFresh enrollment – they even built office space so both representatives are able to work close by each other.
  • McCown-Takalo Hunger Hero Award
    Recipients of the McCown-Takalo Hunger Hero Award exemplify the following values: honesty, compassion, integrity; long term commitment; spokesperson for the underserved; always puts the needs of the clients first; and tenacity.  This year, the award goes to AnnMarie Zimmerman, Loaves & Fishes Family Kitchen and George Chippendale, Society of St. Vincent de Paul of San Mateo County.

  • Loaves & Fishes has filled a compelling community void by providing free, hot, nutritious meals for 36 years. Under AnnMarie Zimmerman’s leadership, she has helped them reinvent themselves to meet the ever changing needs of the Bay Area community. In keeping with the spirit of innovation, Loaves & Fishes is calling this evolution Soup Kitchen 2.0.  In 2014-2015, they served 154,000 guests with 10 staff and 6,000+ volunteers. In 2016, they are on track with serving over 350,000 meals!
  • “AnnMarie is fun, sensitive, passionate, collaborative, strategic thinker, strong and steady,” said Cindy McCown, Second Harvest Vice President of Community Engagement and Policy. “She fosters an organizational culture that is inclusive, honoring the contributions of their guests, volunteers and staff.” [Note: AnnMarie was unable to make it to the event, so her staff accepted the award on her behalf.]

  • Society of St. Vincent de Paul of San Mateo County’s George Chippendale lives the values of the award each and every day. He is incredibly honest and compassionate with his volunteers and those he serves. He does everything with incredible integrity. He has been doing it with passion for longer than Cindy and Susan’s 31 years at Second Harvest. He is the first person to speak up with a question or express a concern. He always puts people first.
  • Susan Takalo, Second Harvest Director of Community Partnerships, can’t count how many times she’s heard him question the rules about rental assistance.  “He is an amazing advocate for his long-term home of East Palo Alto,” said Susan. “He lobbied vigorously for a local shelter so those without housing didn’t have to go to San Mateo or Sunnyvale. He just never gives up.”


    Our partner agencies inspire us every day with their commitment to ending local hunger and believing in this year’s conference theme – “putting people first.”

    Giving Time: Pat Putnam

    “Giving Time” focuses on the invaluable volunteers who donate more than 314,000 hours to Second Harvest each year, more than doubling the size of our staff.

    Special Blog Post featuring Pat Putnam, Development Operations Volunteer, as told to Matt Mastrangelo of Second Harvest Food Bank.

    I’ve been volunteering at Second Harvest for about 12 years.

    I’ve always believed in what was going on with Second Harvest and its mission to feed people in need. If you’re a donor, one of the easiest ways to find out if your money is doing any good is to volunteer for that organization and see how it works. I’ve always been donor. One day I just called them up. They asked is this just for the holiday season and I said no, something more permanent. I started out one day a week. Now I’m here three days a week about five hours a day.

    I don’t deal with the food. I’m weak. (laughs) I can’t lift. So, I verify matching gifts, cleanup the database, including name changes, address changes, returned mail and more. I make sure we don’t send out duplicate mailings so that we’re not using valuable resources that can go toward helping people in need. This is important to the Food Bank’s bottom line. I make sure Michael Jones and Mike Jones are the same person and add a note to the database.

    It’s also valuable to have a volunteer do this work, because it can be time consuming. Having me do this work also impacts the bottom line. I can do the research to solve a problem, and I’m cheap, too. I work for coffee! (laughs)

    I believe in the cause, I like the way Second Harvest uses their volunteers. They find people’s talents, and then they move that person into an area where it can be mutually beneficial for both the volunteer and Second Harvest. And volunteering is a two-way street. My daughter will tell anyone that the Food Bank does more for me than I do for it.

    ***If you’d like to volunteer at Second Harvest, visit

    May Social Media Roundup

    “Social Media Round-Up” is an ‘ICYMI’ compilation of the top hunger-related news articles and other interesting tidbits posted on our social media profiles.

  • Starbucks Finally Starts to Donate All of its Unsold Food. But Donating Isn’t as Easy as It Seems., FORBES.COM
  • Perishable prepared food donations are a bit more challenging for nonprofits to accept and distribute. Thanks to a grant from the David and Lucile Packard Foundation, we’ve hired consultants to help us figure out if and how we should manage these kinds of donations.

  • America Doesn’t Have a Food Problem. It Has a Hunger Problem., VOX.COM
  • “An estimated one in seven Americans faced inadequate or inconsistent access to food at some point in 2014.”

  • The Poor and Middle Class are Fleeing America’s Booming Cities, QZ.COM
  • “The cities riding major economic booms are losing the greatest proportion of their poor and middle class residents. Two of the top three most expensive areas for renters—San Jose, Calif., and Silver Spring, Md.—saw the greatest exodus for those earning $60,000 or less.”

  • California Agriculture Contributes Record Amount of Farm Products to Food Banks, PLANTINGSEEDSBLOG.CDFA.CA.GOV
  • Last year, we acquired about 29.5 million pounds of fresh produce through California Association of Food Banks’ Farm to Family program!

  • Hungry Childhoods Carry Long-Term Impact, MERCURYNEWS.COM
  • “In a month, millions of school-age children will be leaving the security of their schools — and school-provided breakfasts and lunches — for homes that don’t have enough food in them.” ‪‬

  • Million-Dollar Homes: The New Norm in the Bay Area, MERCURYNEWS.COM
  • “In San Francisco and Silicon Valley, there’s about a 50 percent chance that it’s worth $1 million or more.” Yep, that’s our reality.

  • The Poor Pay More For Everyday Purchases – and It’s Getting Worse, a New Study Warns, WASHINGTONPOST.COM
  • “After 20 years, for example, every dollar in the pocket of a poor consumer would be worth just 88 cents compared to what a wealthier consumer would be able to buy with it at the grocery store, given the differences in inflation and in both consumers’ preferences.”

  • Silicon Valley’s Middle Class is Shrinking as Wealthy Prosper, MONEY.CNN.COM
  • “While jobs are more plentiful and pay better in Silicon Valley than in other parts of the state, the higher cost of living still leaves many middle class and lower-income residents in a bind. ‘Even if you are paid more on the job, you are still falling behind at a faster rate than the state and the nation,’ [California Budget & Policy Center Executive Director Chris] Hoene said.”

    *** Read past Social Media Roundups.

    Local Hunger Fighters: Julie Hosfeldt

    “Local Hunger Fighters” is a series that spotlights our awesome supporters and staff who help raise awareness of hunger in our community and motivate people to get involved.

    Local Hunger Fighter: Julie Hosfeldt, WIC Staff Member

    Here’s a note from our Food Connection staff: “Julie has been a fabulous partner to us; we go to the WIC clinic every Wednesday. She always helps to make sure the young children on the coast of San Mateo County have all of the nutrition resources available to them, including CalFresh and other Food Bank programs.”

    How are you helping Second Harvest and our community end hunger?
    As a dietitian for the Women, Infants and Children Special Supplemental Nutrition Program (WIC), I regularly refer clients to Second Harvest’s services. WIC provides basic food staples for families, and Second Harvest helps them supplement those foods.

    What inspires you to give?
    Nourishment is a basic need. There is no excuse for hunger and malnourishment in the U.S., but the reality is that they have always existed. It is a personal mission of mine to contribute as much nutrition expertise as possible to help families overcome these issues.

    Why should people care about hunger in our community?
    Proper nutrition is the basis for an excellent quality of life: good physical health, sharp mental functioning, longevity, avoidance of chronic disease. Hunger and malnourishment costs all of us and our society, most noticeably in the form of skyrocketing health care costs.

    Why do you support Second Harvest?
    It is an amazing organization! By working together and strengthening our collective resources, I believe we can accomplish so much more to help our families achieve a healthier and more food secure lifestyle.

    ***Meet more of your neighbors working to end hunger in our community.