Ways to get involved in the fight against hunger

Hunger in the Jewish community is not a myth but rather a pressing issue that needs attention and help. If you are interested in getting involved, here are a few suggestions:

• Volunteer at — and donate to — a local food pantry. The Harvey Kornblum Jewish Food Pantry is believed to be the largest in the St. Louis area but there are, dozens of others that you can help out as well.

• Consider a food basket as a table centerpiece, instead of flowers, at your next b’nai mitzvah. The baskets can then be donated to area food pantries.

• Help organize a food drive at your synagogue, or become part of a “mitzvah corps” to cook for those in need. Or arrange with local eateries to pick up leftovers they are getting rid of and drive them to a food pantry.


• Teach your children about hunger. Rabbis Andrea Goldstein at Congregation Shaare Emeth and Susan

Talve at Central Reform Congregation, along with congregants at both synagogues, are part of a local contingent that has participated in food stamp challenges. The goal is to see what living on food stamps —  $31.50 per person, or $1.50 per meal — is like for a week. “We learned what a luxury and privilege it is to go to store and get what you want,” says Goldstein, who has three young children. “Our whole family had a heightened awareness of how hard it is to exist on so little. (My son) wanted one kind of cereal, but he understood he couldn’t have it (this week) because it was too expensive.”