from the Big-Hearted Families program of DoingGoodTogether.org

Make Room for the Hungry

A unique exercise to share your abundance.

This project, which makes kids mindful of hunger, requires only a few moments each day. It lasts a month and can begin any day you choose.


Possible Recipients

Local food shelves or charities that work to alleviate or end hunger.

 Click the image to print the PDF.

Click the image to print the PDF.

What you’ll need

  • A bowl or extra place setting (including bowl) at the table

  • Coins

  • Doing Good Together’s Help the Hungry Printable

Instructions

  • Set Your Table: Place an empty bowl or an entire place setting at your table to remind you of those who go without nutritious food each day.

  • Prepare Your Calendar: Print DGT’s Hunger Calendar. Read through the prompts to get a feel for what you’ll be counting. Then add your own ideas in the blank spaces.

  • Start Counting: Every day, count something in your home according to the prompt on your calendar. Put a coin in the bowl for each item counted.

  • Donate: At the end of 30 days, donate the coins you collected to a hunger relief organization or your local food shelf.

For more details on this project, including a “calendar” of items to count each day, see the book Doing Good Together: 101 Easy, Meaningful Service Projects for Families, Schools and Communities by Jenny Friedman and Jolene Roehlkepartain (Free Spirit Publishing, 2010).

Reflections

  • Why is it hard to picture what it’s like to be hungry when you always have plenty to eat?

  • Why do you think some people don’t have enough nutritious food?

  • Why is it important to help people who don’t have enough nutritious food?

  • When we donate our money, how do you think the organization uses it to help people who are hungry?

  • What else can we do to help people who are hungry?

Resources

  • “The Small Bowl of Rice” in Buddha at Bedtime by Dharmachari Nagaraja (Duncan Baird, 2008). Ages 4 and up. This fable tells about the generosity of a man who has little and how it transformed a wealthy miser.

  • If the World Were a Village: A Book about the World’s People by David J. Smith (Kids Can Press, 2nd edition, 2011). Ages 8 and up. This book helps explain who we are and the uneven distribution of resources by imagining the world as a village of 100 people.

Take it further

  • Keep hunger a concern year-round by “adopting” your local food pantry.

  • After your 30 days of collecting coins, go as a family to deliver your donation to the hunger organization you’re supporting. Describe your effort and see if they’d like to promote it to other families as a fundraising idea.

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