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Food Banks

March 4, 2012 | By Tracie McMillan
A few years ago I bought a cookbook titled "Kill It and Grill It" for my boyfriend, a Yale grad who hunted and fished. Admittedly, I offered the gift ironically. I'd been drawn to it by its cover photo of '70s rocker Ted Nugent and his wife, Shemane, each clad in a denim vest and clutching a rifle and knife, respectively. As a native of rural Michigan, I saw the image as both funny and dismaying. They kind of look like families I grew up with, I thought. But who buys a cookbook with a gun on it?
December 21, 2011
In the midst of hard times, Americans are volunteering more and giving more to charity compared with last year and with the rest of the world. According to an annual poll conducted by the international Charities Aid Foundation, with results announced Monday, the people of the United States ranked as the most generous in the world in terms of time and money in 2011, up from fifth place in 2010. Nearly two-thirds of Americans said they had donated money to charity, more than 40% volunteered their time, and close to three-fourths said they had helped a stranger.
November 25, 2011 | David Lazarus
As you survey the remains of your Thanksgiving meal, you might want to give a thought to those who are having trouble putting food on the table because of the lousy economy and high unemployment rate. You can make a difference. From food drives to volunteering to help at a food pantry, this is a great time of year to think about giving along with all the seasonal consuming. "Donating a bag of food can go a long way toward helping families who are living paycheck to paycheck," said Michael Flood, president of the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank, which distributes more than 1 million pounds of commodities each week, the equivalent of about 770,000 meals.
September 21, 2011 | By Joe Piasecki, Los Angeles Times
The director of a senior citizens food bank in Pasadena said demand for groceries has almost doubled over the last three years. On the first Friday of each month, more than 570 residents 65 or older wait in line for free groceries at the Pasadena Senior Center at Memorial Park, according to executive director Akila Gibbs. An additional 100 with limited mobility have groceries delivered through the program. In 2008, approximately 350 sought regular help with food, she said. In 2004, only about 50 used the program, a partnership with the Los Angeles Food Bank that is designed to serve San Gabriel Valley seniors with an annual income of $10,000 or less.
August 5, 2011 | By Jeannine Stein, Los Angeles Times / For the Booster Shots blog
People who grow their own fruits and vegetables are apt to eat them, but a study finds that community gardeners may have an edge over home gardeners when it comes to consuming more fresh produce. A study in this month's issue of the American Journal of Public Health surveyed 436 adult men and women in Denver over the course of a year about their gardening habits and how they felt about the community in which they lived. They were also quizzed about how many fruits and vegetables they ate per day and regular physical activity.
January 18, 2011 | By Corina Knoll, Los Angeles Times
The marching bands got the crowd moving; so did the dance and drill teams. But the response was different when an old buck wagon drawn by a single mule with two handlers ? one black, one white ? rolled by. A sign on the wagon read: "They can kill the dreamer, but the dream will never die. " Many turned quiet at the sight. Some removed their hats. The 26th annual Kingdom Day Parade held Monday in South Los Angeles evoked a range of emotions as it celebrated black America and mourned the death of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. More than 40 years after the Nobel Peace Price recipient was assassinated in Memphis, Tenn.
December 25, 2010 | By Ashley Powers, Los Angeles Times
They shivered on the sidewalk, wind pelting their cheeks, and shuffled toward Evelyn Mount's modest beige home. For dozens of this out-of-luck gambling city's untoward and unemployed, it was a destination of last resort. Mount and her volunteers greeted them outside her two-car garage with enough groceries to whip up a feast. Mount has run a makeshift food bank here for three decades; there's probably never been a greater hunger for it. In the weeks before Thanksgiving, Mount's team handed out more than 7,000 meals, thousands more than during prosperous times.
November 25, 2010 | By Catherine Saillant, Los Angeles Times
As food pantries increase their distribution of turkeys and other holiday fixings, a Camarillo animal shelter is handing out bags of kibble for dogs and cats, an equally needy but often overlooked demographic. On Sundays, Pet Pantry rolls up its doors and distributes free bulk servings of dry food to recipients who can no longer afford to feed their animals. They are older people on fixed incomes, families who are down on their luck and those who have lost jobs. Ventura County Animal Services, which operates the pantry, has posted a 25% increase over the last year in the number of animals in its Camarillo shelter, said Monica Nolan, animal services director.
October 6, 2010 | Steve Lopez
Todd Little, a 45-year-old West Hollywood resident with a college degree, has been studying survival lately. He knows not to park his vehicle where it will be easy for the repo man to find. He knows how to make a few days of food pantry handouts last for a week. He knows a few tricks for enduring the hell of long waits at the welfare office. "You have to laugh about it," says Little, who always had steady work as a set decorator and residential and retail design consultant until two years ago, when it all went bust.
February 18, 2010 | By Mary MacVean
The business of government often has been conducted over a meal, but these days it's food itself that's on the public agenda: how to get more and better food to poor people, how to improve what children eat at school, how to encourage access to farmers' products and community gardens, how to combat obesity, and more. "There has been a real reawakening about food in Los Angeles," says Eric Garcetti, L.A. City Council president, whose district includes the Hollywood Farmers Market.
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