“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 marie k

Local Hunger Fighter: Marie Kung, Food Connection Specialist, Second Harvest Food Bank

Food Connection Field Manager Nicole Martinez hadthis to say about Marie Kung: “She is a valuable asset to the Food Connection team. She is our go-to person for Chinese translations for the entire department. Marie is smart, level headed and dedicated to our mission. She is helping us reach so many more people and is an absolute gem!”

How are you helping Second Harvest and our community?

I am a Food Connection Specialist at the Food Bank and this position enables me to directly connect vulnerable community members to our numerous free food programs. To ensure that people know about these resources, we have a presence at clinics, schools, colleges and community fairs everyday. In addition, I am proud of our team because together, we have the language capacity for English, Spanish, Vietnamese and Chinese. As a result, we are able to effectively reach out to people from diverse backgrounds.

What inspires you to give to our community?

I believe that a healthy community is full of love and genuine concern for everyone’s well-being. However, this vision for a healthy community can only happen through each member’s actions and commitment. I believe that cultivating this kind of community is possible and therefore, I am inspired to conscientiously give back through my work as a Food Connection Specialist.

Why should people care about hunger in our community?

In Silicon Valley, the high cost of living forces families to cut costs and often, many families are forced to cut the cost of food, even though it is a basic need. As a result, food insecurity negatively impacts our community and in particular, the future generation. However, by ensuring that no household is hungry, we can ensure that families are able to thrive. If community members came together to increase everyone’s access to healthy food, then families’ overall well-being will improve and in turn, they can continue to make positive contributions to our community.

What do you love most about working at Second Harvest?

I am the first Chinese-speaking Food Connection Specialist at Second Harvest Food Bank and I have always been excited about the opportunity to connect Chinese communities with food resources. Having worked with Chinese communities in the past, I know that hunger is a real issue but many are unaware of resources that could help them. I also noticed that for cultural reasons, most Chinese seniors who are food insecure still decline the program. I love working at Second Harvest because it gives me opportunities to help these Chinese seniors understand the importance of food security and to talk through the different barriers they face. I hope to continue working with them to raise awareness about ways to live better and healthier.

***Meet more of your neighbors helping us build a hunger-free community.