Manhattan is the richest city of the richest nation, and yet it has the paradox of hunger that hits hundreds of its population. Food Bank For New York City aims to eradicate hunger throughout the five boroughs.
The charity held its Annual Can-Do Awards Dinner on Thursday, April 7 at Chelsea Piers. The event honored partners who support the Food Bank For New York City in its ongoing efforts to end hunger. As one of the largest fundraising event of the country, the star-studded gala gathered famous celebrity chefs and distinguished television and music personalities. Mario Batali, Jon Stewart, Al Roker, Jon Bon Jovi and Sarah McLachlan all came together to raise hunger awareness.
Bon Jovi brings up the issue of growing disparities due to the economic recession. “The working poor in America are increasing in numbers every day. A lot of people are calling up in the economic downturn. A lot of people lost their homes, lost their jobs. These things are slowly coming back but slowly is not fast enough to feed families”, says the musician.
Co-chairing the Can-Do Awards dinner, Batali insists on tackling child hunger. “The fact that 1 in 5 children in New York City go to bed hungry, even just once a week, seems just intolerable”, stresses the chef. Batali’s family has been involved with the Food Bank For New York City for 25 years. His own charity, the Mario Batali Foundation focuses on feeding, protecting and empowering children. The foundation entitles the kids to dream big while providing them with the necessary tools to become an active force of tomorrow’s world.
Stars recommend initiatives to halt hunger. Anthony Bourdain calls for “money and continue giving overtime. It should not be a one-time thing”. Television personality Hoda Kotb suggests “giving just a little something”. As all of us being member of the civil society, Chef Rachael Ray considers that “community service is everybody’s job”. Everyone must take responsibility to improve social justice and promote equality in meeting people’s fundamental needs. If people cannot contribute financially to hunger relief, then they can volunteer and raise hunger awareness within the greater community.
According to Food Bank for New York City 1.5 million individuals depend on food pantries and soup kitchens throughout the five boroughs. The charity is the life-blood of the city in this combat. Its work is vital for too many of our neighbors. To learn more about how you could contribute to reduce inequalities among New Yorkers, please visit www.foodbanknyc.org.