Westlake’s Carden Conejo School Participating in Second Annual Hunger Awareness and Action Week
11/20/2013

Westlake Village’s Carden Conejo School is participating in its second annual Hunger Awareness and Action Week from Nov. 18-23 to stamp out hunger within the community

Online PR News – 20-November-2013 – Westlake, Calif. – (Westlake, Calif.) - As the saying goes, “Big things come in small packages.” That is exactly what Carden Conejo School in Westlake Village will prove as Ventura County FOOD Share’s youngest team of partners that will support the regional food bank’s annual holiday Tackle Hunger campaign. National Hunger Awareness and Action Week is from Nov. 18-23, and the Carden Conejo community will seize the opportunity to leverage the spirit of generosity that generally surrounds the pre-Thanksgiving holiday. Rather than provide students with a single day of instruction about the issue, they will participate for the second annual weeklong event that will not only educate them on food scarcity, but one that will also have them engage in direct service with Ventura County’s FOOD Share.

Carden Conejo School, a private school that instructs 205 students from pre-school through eighth-grade, has devised an innovative program with the slogan “Hunger Hurts, Help Others” to build a commitment to philanthropy among their community while simultaneously creating a sustainable model that could be replicated in other schools. This is the second year that Carden Conejo has dedicated a week to the social justice issue of hunger. In 2012, the school donated 2,350 pounds of nonperishable food to FOOD Share, which equates to over 1,900 meals. New this year, the school is encouraging students to engage in a Zero Waste Food Day, with the intent of significantly reducing the amount of discarded food.

Highlights of the week will include the following:

• Monday, 11/18 – Tuesday, 11/19 – Canned Food Drive
• Wednesday, 11/20 – Food Sort and Zero Waste Food Day
• Thursday, 11/21 – Bake Sale, “My Pledge” / Thankful Paper Chain
• Friday, 11/22 – Share results at school assembly
• Saturday, 11/23 – Volunteer With Your Family Member and Students at FOOD Share

FOOD Share provides meals to approximately 45,000 children in Ventura County each month, roughly a 150 percent increase over the past four years. Food Share’s goal for this week is to increase awareness by 50 percent among grades K-8 regarding the Ventura County hunger rates.

“FOOD Share has been privileged to have the support of many local schools throughout the years. All of the steps Carden Conejo School is taking this year again to open the eyes of young students to the issues of food insecurity is truly remarkable,” said Bonnie Weigel, president and CEO of FOOD Share. “It’s never too early to educate our youth on the seriousness of how food scarcity not only affects our friends at home, but also individuals of the world.”

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About FOOD Share:
The food bank distributing millions of pounds of food each year to those in need throughout Ventura County, FOOD Share collects and receives food year-round, distributing through more than 162 pantry partner agencies throughout Ventura County, including Camarillo, Fillmore, Moorpark, Oak View, Ojai, Oxnard, Santa Paula, Simi Valley, Somis, Thousand Oaks and Ventura.
FOOD Share provides food to more than 74,500 people each month countywide through its partner agencies and multiple programs. Programs include the Senior Brown Bag that provides supplemental nutrition to nearly 2,000 low income seniors, home delivered meals and supplemental groceries through the Oxnard and Ventura Senior Nutrition Programs and, the Kids’ Farmers’ Markets, offering nutrition education, healthy recipe preparation and taste testing and a farmers’ market free fresh produce “shopping experience.”
In 2011, FOOD Share partnered with Ventura County’s Human Services Agency to provide expanded CalFresh enrollment assistance. CalFresh, formerly called food stamps, is the largest federal nutrition assistance program that provides supplemental nutrition assistance to eligible Ventura County residents.
In May 2013, FOOD Share established a partnership with Southern California Gas to further expand and support the hungry individuals the food bank serves. The Southern California Gas CARE Program provides a further source of support to individuals and families who are struggling to make ends meet. The CARE program provides relief through discounted gas utility bills for individuals and families.
For more information: call (805) 983-7100 or go to http://www.foodshare.com.

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