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So What’s a Food Challenge Anyway?

In this case the Food Challenge is a month of programming related to food justice issues. But what does that even mean? It means that the whole month of March at Bonai Shalom is dedicated to discussions, meals, events, movie screening, classes, school curricula, food stamp challenge, food waste challenge, volunteer challenge, and food donation challenge. We’ve got something for everyone.

As Jews we are taught about the importance feeding the hungry from a very young age. At every seder we say, “Let all who are hungry come here and eat.” We collect tzedakah, we give food gifts on Purim. In Exodus just a few short days after God performs the miracles of parting the sea and bringing the Israelites out of Egypt and giving them water the people start to complain. “The Israelites said to them, ‘If only we had died by God’s hand in Egypt! There at least we could sit by pots of meat and eat our fill of bread! But you had to bring us out to this desert, to kill the entire community by starvation!’” (Exodus 16:3) We see that it is impossible to appreciate even the greatest miracles with empty stomachs. Hunger reduces us to animals; the need for food surpasses the need for shelter, peace, friendship, knowledge, comfort, love. When we feed the hungry we elevate all of humanity.

For information and the downloadable tool-kit click here. The tool‐kit is designed to help you navigate through the whole month’s program. You will find a calendar with all related activities listed; instructions on doing both the Food Waste Challenge and the Food Stamp Challenge; information on where and how and who to contact to volunteer locally along; some basic facts and figures about hunger in our community and nationally; and many links to websites that have much more information than we can include here. If you have any questions please feel free to contact foodchallenge@bonaishalom.org.

About Jessica Hersh

Jessica Hersh lives and cooks in Boulder. She works at Bonai Shalom and in other kitchens around town.

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