One Winter, I remember, my two-job-working mom couldn’t afford Christmas presents, and we lived on (healthy, whole grain) brown rice and popcorn. Still, it’s hard these days to imagine that citizens right here in Boulder, and all over Colorado, and the whole of the US are going through such tough times…and far, far worse.
In fact, 21% of Denver children live in poverty and live in hunger. This in America, a first world nation that prides itself on the strength of our society, infrastructure and wealth. A bad economy doesn’t help.
Tonight I’m emceeing Operation Frontline’s Chefs up Front fundraiser at the St. Julien Hotel. I’m honored to be in the company of a dozen leading chefs who have donated their services, many for five years in a row (since the program began).
Sobering statistics: More than 12.4 million children were at risk of hunger at some point last year. That’s 17.2% of all children, or one in six. Among them are:
- 5.1 million kids —43.6%—living at or below the poverty threshold.
- 5.9 million kids living with a married couple.
- 5.8 million kids -one-third—who live in single-woman households .
- 5.3 million Caucasian kids—1.4 million or more than any other racial group.
- 10.6 million kids living within metro areas—5 times the number living outside metro areas.
- 5.2 million in the South—more than in any other region of the country.
What can you do? Check out Operation Frontline’s 10 Point Plan.
Kat Gregory invited me to emcee awhile back, and to serve as auctioneer (a stressful, but infinitely rewarding job that I’ve taken on a half-dozen times in different contexts over the years).