For many people, the holidays are a great time to give to their favorite charitable organizations, like the Greater Chicago Food Depository. We are immensely grateful for that generosity.

But the need persists even after the holiday giving slows down.

Take LaTasha Williams, for example. Her part-time job as a delivery driver ended after the holidays when her contract expired. Williams is searching for a new job, but in the meantime she turns to one of the pantries in the Food Depository’s network in Chicago and throughout Cook County.

“There is no guarantee there is another (job) around the corner,” Williams said. “It’s hard, but I hope it gets better. You have to hope it gets better.”

As 2019 gets underway, here are five ways to help Williams and the hundreds of thousands of our neighbors who are facing food insecurity.

  1. Start a virtual food drive. Fresh produce and proteins are increasingly at the center of our food purchases. By engaging your friends and family to donate to an online food drive, you are helping us stretch each dollar farther. Every dollar you donate can help us provide three meals – roughly doubling the amount of food a dollar can purchase at a regular grocery store.
  2. Speak out against hunger. Join us in advocating for policies to end hunger. Educate yourself on how to get involved and expand your knowledge on a variety of policy topics. Share your story with lawmakers and let them know why you care about anti-hunger policies.
  3. Give your time. We can’t do the work we do without the help of every Food Depository volunteer. Repack bulk food into individual- and family-sized portions at our warehouse. Food pantries and programs in our network also need volunteers: find information for one of our partner agencies near you to see how you can help.
  4. Provide when you shop. A variety of businesses throughout the Chicagoland area give back to the Food Depository when you make purchases. Find a variety of goods and events that benefit the Food Depository.
  5. Share your support on social media. Raising awareness of hunger goes a long way. Tell your friends on Facebook, Instagram or other social channels why you believe in the Food Depository’s mission. Give us love by tagging us @FoodDepository and use #EndHungerNow.
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