Sunday, November 15th, marked the beginning of National Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week, a period of reflection and action towards ending poverty in the United States. Hosted by the National Coalition for the Homeless, the campaign is held annually the week before Thanksgiving, a time of year conducive to eliciting compassion and actions towards those experiencing homelessness or hunger.
Currently, 46.2 million Americans live below the poverty line, including roughly 16 million children. The aim of this week is thus two-fold; the campaign is designed to bring attention to statistics and figures on poverty, but also to work to reduce the number of individuals living below the poverty line.
The holiday season is a rife time for charity contributions and giving. Yet, often times charity can only provide surface level solutions to deep, systemic problems. What are ways we can work to move beyond charity and into creating institutional changes within our economy? What are ways in which we can create solidarity with those experiencing hunger or homelessness? How do awareness campaigns like National Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week help?