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Food Insecurity in America + Lunchbox Heroes Kick Off

August 8, 2022
5 min. read

Back to school season is here! And that means, soon, kitchens will fill up with kids waiting for their packed lunch before school or coming home and requesting the famous after-school snack. But, what if, as a parent, you turned around to graze the cupboards for something to feed your hungry school kids and nothing but empty shelves stared back at you?

Unfortunately, that’s what 16 million families in America face every day. Food insecurity is a huge problem for our kids.

What is “food insecurity?”

According to, food insecure households are those in which not everyone has enough food to eat. Cupboards and fridges are scarce and kids go hungry each and every day due to food insecurity.

Now, you may be thinking “what does food insecurity have to do with back-to-school season?” Well, going to school and getting a school-provided lunch is one of the best ways for food insecure kids to get something wholesome to eat. Unfortunately, that means that getting a meal outside of school time (or during summer break) can be a challenge.

It’s a good thing, then, that there are many non-profit organizations working to solve this exact food shortage problem in school-aged kids. In fact, because of their work, America saw declining food insecurity rates in households across the country up until 2020. But we can’t stop working toward the goal, particularly with the lasting effects of the pandemic and the increasing cost of food.

Let’s take a brief look at a few of the real-life heroes working toward ending childhood hunger:

Blessings in a Backpack

Starting with just two schools in 2005, Blessings in a Backpack now serves almost 90 thousand students each school year. Operating out of several chapters around the country, they provide backpacks of food for school kids to take home on the weekends so they have plenty of food to eat even when they’re not coming to school. Learn more about their mission here:


No Kid Hungry

When you visit No Kid Hungry’s website page about who they are, the headline simply reads: “No child should go hungry. If it sounds simple, that’s because it is.” No Kid Hungry works in various ways to end childhood hunger, including funding school lunches, distributing grants to schools and food banks, and advocating for others to get in on the mission.


Action for Healthy Kids

As part of their broader mission to provide kids with nutrient-rich foods, AFHK also has a backpack program that works similarly to Blessings in a Backpack where kids are given food to take home on the weekends when school meals are not available.


Feeding America

As Feeding America’s website says, “hunger is a complex issue.” That’s why this organization is working to tackle it holistically by turning food waste into food for the hungry. They also partner with food banks in local areas and work with families and individuals to find long term solutions to their economic challenges.


So, what can I do to help combat food insecurity?

Whether or not you have extra funds or food to share, there are many ways you can get involved and help fight hunger on the front lines. Browse a few of them below and then check out how Martin’s is giving you the opportunity to help us donate to Blessings in a Backpack for the next several weeks!

  1. Donate

Perhaps the most obvious way to support food charities is to give of your personal funds. Money is an essential part of keeping these charities staffed and operating successfully.

  1. Fundraise

If you do not have the ability to give of your own money or food, there is still a way you can help fund these organizations. Try selling homemade goods to raise money, organizing a Facebook fundraiser, or hosting your own food drive!

  1. Volunteer

Giving of your time is another valuable way to contribute to the cause. Each charity has their own unique programs and ways for you to get involved, so check out the websites of the charities above or your local food banks to see how you can help.

  1. Share Kind Words

A simple but meaningful way for you to spread kindness to the people involved in these charities is to write a note of encouragement. If you would like to participate in this way, check out this page or this page for more details.

  1. Visit – More details below!


Lunchbox Heroes Kick Off

Martin’s firmly believes in the importance of giving back to our community and being generous with our time and money to help those in need. In fact, for decades, Martin’s as a company has donated 10-20% of our profits to a variety of charities and non-profit organizations every year, which is one of the reasons we wanted to integrate a charitable element into our back-to-school campaign. So, back-to-school season, Martin’s Potato Rolls and Bread is partnering with Blessings in a Backpack to provide a brand new way for you to get involved in the cause to fight childhood hunger.

From now until September 25th, Martin’s is searching for our Lunchbox Sidekicks, and we’re giving money to Blessings in a Backpack for each person who is willing to participate in that search! Just go to to tell us which items you (or a family member) love to see alongside Martin’s in your lunchbox. Just by sharing your opinion, you’ll be helping to fight childhood hunger! For each completed form received, Martin’s will donate $5 to Blessings in a Backpack (up to $20,000 in total). Plus, each week, one entrant will receive a free Martin’s backpack!

Will you join the fight against childhood hunger?
Visit today.



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