There may be no more worthy cause than combatting the perils of childhood hunger. Unfortunately, the epidemic is not relegated to just the developing world, but it regularly rears its ugly head right here in West Michigan. For that reason, Grand Rapids Label has long been an enthusiastic supporter of Kids’ Food Basket, a nonprofit dedicated to attacking childhood hunger since 2002.
True to form, Kids’ Food Basket is attempting to stretch its charitable reach even more, announcing a $6 million Feeding Our Future fundraising campaign to extend its services to 15,000 more students across Kent, Muskegon and Ottawa counties. They are also constructing a new headquarters on 14 acres of old farmland that will be key in extending services even further.
Support for Kids’ Food Basket helps the nonprofit distribute sack suppers after school for nearly 7,500 kids each weekday. For some, this represents the one guaranteed meal they may get each day. What’s worse, those that receive the food assistance represent only 21 percent of the overall need in Kent County alone — one of the reasons the nonprofit is pushing to expand to the collective 32 schools on their waiting list.
Besides the new building site, Kids’ Food Basket operates a working farm that produces all the fruit and vegetables distributed daily in the sack suppers. Volunteers also help tend to the crops, prepare the meals while learning about food production. Overall, Kids’ Food Basket makes a huge difference for thousands of Michigan families — but there is a bigger need still.