Most likely you’ve heard about Bruce Jackson, the 19 year old boy who was recently found looking for food in garbage cans in Collingswood, N.J. He weighed just 45 pounds and was no taller than 4 feet. The story made national headlines, not because it is so rare to find a starving child, but because of the bizarre and extreme circumstances surrounding his malnourishment. In the wake of the controversy surrounding Jackson and his adopted brothers, The New Jersey Division of Youth and Family Services fired some of its employees for their incompetence, his parents were arrested and those who heard or read about the story were outraged.
Great, so how does that affect you? Well, unfortunately Jackson is not alone in his suffering. In fact, the richest country in the world (that’s us by the way) claims 33 million hungry people. A sad and sobering statistic that is unnecessary and unwarranted considering the wealth most of us enjoy and our ability to prevent such problems.
The sobering part of the whole thing is that Jackson’s family lived 20 minutes from my house. I’ve never wondered if there was going to be food on the table. Sure, in my youthful ignorance, after my routine of opening the fridge and cabinets several times, I’d sarcastically complain to my mom about what I thought was “nothing to eat.” But it never crossed my mind that there might not be food on the table come dinner time. Unfortunately, that thought does cross the minds of millions of Americans living in poverty.
Education is the greatest weapon to fight any war, including the war on poverty and what better place is there to get educated on something, then right here on campus? This month Cabrini is involved in its annual Hunger and Homelessness Campaign. Ironically, this year’s theme is “Reaching Out to Children & Families.” The campaign is an opportunity for all of us to make a positive impact in fighting hunger and homelessness. There are plenty of ways to get involved and everyone is encouraged to help out. Here is a list of the events taking place on campus:
Tuesday, Nov. 18, between 11 and 2 p.m.- Jazzman’s Caf