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The USDA National Rankings estimate that 1 in 5 children in Minnesota struggle with hunger. That's too many.

I found out the hard way- while crunching numbers- that not only is this information true, but it hits close to home for those living in East Central Minnesota and Western Wisconsin. Putting together this years Family Pathways' annual report was difficult for me. For while I am proud of the amazing work that Family Pathways' staff and volunteers accomplish every year, I am stunned by how many people actually need this assistance. Believe me, we would all love to have to go out of business.

The disturbing number to me this year was 36%. That's how many people our food shelves served in 2016 that are children. And the food shelves served 18,944 people.That's almost 7,000 kids.

Why am I telling you this?

Because 40% of kindergarten through twelfth grade kids rely on free lunch at school for the bulk of their nutrition. This leaves a lot of kids hungry on summer break. It gets worse, only 13% of the kids that utilize the free lunch at school are getting access to a summer meal program. You can help to change these numbers right here in our backyards. Download the No Kid Hungry Summer Lunch report here to learn more.

What do you need to know?

March is the MN FoodShare Campaign. So a portion of your donations made to the food shelves will be matched by the Minnesota Council of Churches. That's win/win. And, when you give $1, we are able to buy $7 of food through the food bank. That's smart giving. Another win/win. And this amazing math is needed to help stock our shelves for the summer lunch program so that we can feed kids and their families that live in East Central Minnesota and Western Wisconsin. We cannot do this work without YOU! You can help squash hunger.

If you believe no child should go to bed hungry, click here. Thank YOU!

If you'd like more information, please don't hesitate to contact me, Beth Nault, Director of Advancement at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or our Director of Hunger Relief, Kathy Wills at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 651-674-8040 to speak with either of us.