La Puente’s Hunger Education Week wrapped up on Friday. The week’s events were designed to bring awareness to hunger so the community can work together to fight it. The week saw community-wide involvement to fight hunger, not just here in the Valley, but worldwide.
The week kicked off on Sunday, April 7 with the 25th annual CROP Walk at the Alamosa Senior Center. The Community raised more than $2,000 for Church World Services, an international hunger relief organization and the local SLV Food Bank Network.
Over 200 community members walked 5km in solidarity for those who are experiencing hunger at this very moment. Members from local organizations, churches, and Adams State University students and staff came out to support the cause.
The Adams State football team was the largest group for the second year in a row with 79 participates while the First United Methodist Church brought in the largest donation.
A week of education
On Tuesday, La Puente’s Valley Educational Gardens Initiative (VEGI) hosted a Container Gardening workshop at the ASU Community Garden. More than 20 community members learned how to start plants indoors and how to care for them. Community members were shown how to create a container garden for any space while on a budget. Recycled containers were used,
and supplies were available so that container gardens could be taken home to increase their growing season and create healthy food to eat. More gardening materials, resources, and information are available at VEGI’s Garden Nights, every Tuesday from 5-7 p.m. May 1 to Sept. 24 at Boyd Community Garden on the corner of State and Ninth streets in Alamosa.
Wednesday, April 10th was the Fill the Van Food Drive supporting La Puente’s Food Bank Network of the San Luis Valley. A dozen volunteers spent the day at City Market and Safeway collecting canned food and monitory donations. The community came together and 577 pounds of food and $438 was donated to go directly to feeding community members. Annually, La Puente’s Food Bank Network distributes 13 tons of food to ensure that no one must go to bed hungry in the SLV, community drives like this one are an important way they bring in that food.
Thursday night held Hunger Advocacy Happy Hour at Squarepeg Brewerks. Attendees were able to learn about federal, state and local efforts to help fight hunger, and ways to ensure La Puente’s Food Bank Network continues to provide meals for over 13,000 individuals a year. Advocates learned about SNAP (food stamps) and the benefit it offers locally. It was also an opportunity to write postcards to Senator Bennet, Senator Gardner and Representative Tipton inviting them to take a tour of La Puente and see their hunger relief programs in action.
Friday, April 12 Cooking Matters held a Pop-Up tour at the Alamosa Food Bank. Volunteers educated community members on how to make healthy choices while on a budget. Hunger isn’t just a calorie issue it’s a nutritional issue. Cooking Matters strives to teach better eating habits and address hunger at the same time. Participants received a $10 gift card to City Market.
Hunger Education Week may be over but the fight to end hunger isn’t. Hunger still exists and is present in the valley. One in four in this community suffer from food insecurity. There are still things to be done and ways to help. The Food Bank Network is always taking food donations and the La Puente Shelter needs people to come cook a meal. To learn more about ways to help at La Puente and support it’s hunger-relief programs that provide over 350,000 meals a year, contact the Community Education Office at (719) 587-3499 or email [email protected]