As restrictions are lifting from Covid 19, people are eager to resume living and getting back to their routines and passions. Countries around the world rely on others to help feed those in need who have not been spared by the pandemic. On June 26th Pine Grove UMC held the Rise Against Hunger event. Rise Against Hunger is a global movement to end hunger by empowering communities, nourishing lives and responding to emergencies.
The concept of this mission began while Ray Buchanan was serving as a U.S. Marine during the Vietnam War. He recognized that accomplishing the mission required “commitment to something larger than yourself.” Later as a United Methodist minister, Ray embraced the vision of a world without hunger and co-founded Stop Hunger Now in 1998 alongside and with generous donor support from entrepreneur John Hewitt. Stop Hunger Now rebranded in 2017 to become Rise Against Hunger.
The focus behind Rise Against Hunger’s operation is the appreciation that ending hunger is more than just feeding people, which has led Rise Against Hunger to concentrate its feeding programs in areas where a real impact could be felt and expand its hunger-fighting programs beyond meal packaging and distribution.
Rise Against Hunger facilitates meal packaging events all across the country through 19 domestic locations, and through their 5 international affiliate locations in India, Italy, South Africa, Malaysia and the Philippines. Groups gather and package dehydrated ingredients in assembly lines, then box and palletize the meals, and truck them from Charlotte to Charleston in 40’ containers with 285,120 meals all together, where they are then shipped to distribution partners around the world.
Pine Grove UMC packaged 14,256 meals (66 full boxes) at their event on June 26th, and they have now hosted 10 events since 2010 totaling 170,412 meals packaged (789 full boxes). We don’t know the destination for this year’s meals yet until we have enough inventory to fill our next container, but their previous year’s meals were shipped to:
Nicaragua supporting our Latin American school feeding partners:
5/4/2019 – 10,152 meals to ORPHANetwork
5/20/2017 – 17,712 meals to ORPHANetwork
5/21/2016 – 13,176 meals to North Country Mission of Hope
5/16/2015 – 24,192 meals to One Child Matters
Madagascar supporting our South African school feeding partner Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA)
5/5/2018 – 15,336 meals
Burkina Faso supporting our West African relief aide partner Catholic Relief Services
5/31/2014 – 9,936 meals (split shipment)
Mozambique supporting our southeast African school feeding partner Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA)
5/31/2014 – 14,256 meals (split shipment)
Due to a system migration, shipment destination is unavailable for the following years:
4/28/2012 – 16,158 meals
5/7/2011 – 19,224 meals
5/8/2010 – 16,014 meals
Blane Maxwell, the Community Engagement Manager in Charlotte says, “The reason I mentioned the “full boxes” above, is that every box of meals Pine Grove UMC is able to package (789 to date), they are responsible for feeding 1 child for an entire year! That’s 789 kids that they’ve fed through school feeding programs in South Africa, West Africa, and Nicaragua! But, they’re not only just providing meals, they’re truly providing hope for a better future. Through our school feeding programs, we’re breaking the cycle of malnutrition AND under-education. By partnering with the communities we serve, we can ultimately work from the meal packing programs to agricultural and sustainability programs, so that one day they will be self-sufficient and resilient enough to not need Rise Against Hunger’s meals anymore.”
If you are interested in helping with Rise Against Hunger or to learn more, please visit
www.riseagainsthunger.org or call (919)839-0689