July 1, 2019

Fight hunger and reduce food waste this 4th of July

3 tips to make your Independence Day party double-duty for good.

Why not turn your 4th of July barbecue into a way to help your neighbors in need? Photo by Deb Lindsey For The Washington Post via Getty Images

Editor’s note: Move for Hunger was a 2017 Renewal Awards finalist. Read how its founder Adam Lowy got the idea for launching the nonprofit while working in the family business. The Renewal Awards is a program of The Atlantic and Allstate. Sign up for our newsletter to get alerts when the next round of awards opens in the fall.

The 4th of July is days away, and Americans all across the country are gearing up for backyard barbecues with family and friends. But did you ever stop to think about those who can’t afford to have a big cookout? Or how about the amount of food that inevitably gets wasted at our Independence Day celebrations? With 42 million Americans living with food insecurity during the summer, one of the toughest times to be food insecure, this holiday can be an opportunity to help.

Here are three tips to turn your 4th of July party into a successful contribution to your community.

  • Have it double as a food drive: As mentioned, summer is a particularly difficult time for food banks and those in need of food. Ask guests to bring non-perishable food items to your party and have a box out ready to collect donations. At the conclusion of the event, bring the box of donated food to your local food bank.
  • Make it a contest: Having a friendly competition is a great way to encourage people to bring food donations. Provide a little prize for the winner!

  • Encourage guests to bring take-home containers: It is estimated that 150 million hot dogs are consumed on the Fourth of July. What about everything that doesn’t get eaten? Tell guests to bring take-home containers to bring food home as leftovers. This eliminates food waste, and who doesn’t love having a day off from deciding what to make for dinner?

Looking for more food drive tips? We’ve got ’em!

This article originally appeared on Move for Hunger’s blog.

Learn more about Move for Hunger and find out how to start your own food drive here.

Dan Beam

Move For Hunger

Dan Bean is the Communications Manager at Move for Hunger. He graduated from Seton Hall University with a BS in Sports Management. He recently joined the Move For Hunger team after spending the past 10 years with the New Jersey Devils and is very excited to be a part of an organization that’s dedicated to such an important cause. In his spare time, he enjoys listening to music, reading, and catching up on his favorite TV shows. Dan and his wife, Cathy, and their daughter, Elena, currently live in Asbury Park along with their dog, Molly, and their cat, Mittens.
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