It’s a week until Christmas and for many people, that means last minute Christmas shopping, preparing to visit family, attending holiday parties, and eating lots of Christmas cookies. In the midst of holiday preparations, however, we wanted to remind you about the Montana Meals Challenge of the Month: Give the Gift of Good Nutrition by donating food, money, or time to your local food bank.

Many grocery stores make it easy to donate by having a bin near the checkout stations for the food bank. While you’re shopping, pick up an extra can or two to drop into the bin on your way out the door. It’s a simple act that can make a significant difference to individuals and families in our communities who would otherwise be hungry if it weren’t for donations to the food bank.

The challenge isn’t necessarily limited to food banks. If your town has a soup kitchen or other type of food assistance program, that can certainly count too if you donate.  For example, Bozeman has a sit-down, restaurant style soup kitchen called the Community Café that is always in need of volunteers to help with serving dinner. Or take a cue from Ron B., Wellness Champion from Bozeman, who served meals to homebound seniors and on-the-job police officers on Thanksgiving and who plans to do so again on Christmas.  Thanks Ron! Big donation or small, everything counts. Just send us a quick email at wellness@montana.edu to tell us how you donated!

Below is a partial list of area food banks.  For a complete list, visit http://mfbn.org/learn/programs/partner-agencies/locate-a-partner-agency

If there are no food assistance agencies listed for your area, consider donating to the Montana Food Bank Network, a nonprofit organization working across the state to end hunger. Find out more information and how to donate here: http://mfbn.org/

Happy Holidays!

CS

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