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Hitting back at hunger – a Daybreak conversation

Hunger action month in Indianapolis

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — To highlight a month dedicated to the fight against hunger nationally, local leaders are touting ways to fight the problem on the community level in Marion County.

The Indianapolis Office of Public Health and Safety has several “Hunger Action Month” events and opportunities, all aimed at connecting people with healthy food and helping them develop the skills to consistently acquire and prepare it.

One effort underway all month: a series of cooking and food demonstrations. Tikilia Tinker-Martin is the Food Equity and Community Engagement Coordinator for the city.

“We are talking about the importance of not just giving them food, but giving them food that will potentially shape and define their health and wellness,” Tinker-Martin said Friday on Daybreak. “We’ve given them the recipes so they can take the items home and recreate them for their families.”

There are two remaining demonstrations this month:

Sept. 15:

  • Carson Transit Center
  • 201 E. Washington St.
  • 2 p.m. – 4 p.m.

Sept. 26:

  • Laundry & More
  • 4212 North Post Road
  • 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Tinker-Martin also shared with our viewers specifics about a ride-sharing program that makes sure people can reach healthy food, even if the nearest store is miles away. It offers affordable Lyft rides to a SNAP-eligible grocery store, up to eight times a month.

“If you wanted to go to a store every week to get fresh fruits and veggies, you can go for $1 each way,” she explained.

Our conversation also highlighted the Community Compass app, which can help you find the nearest food pantry, learn about assistance available through government programs, and provide interactive answers to all kinds of food-related questions. You can download it here.

The city is also hoping to spread awareness about several other programs and opportunities:

  • Neighborhood Food Champions: Offers training and support for people willing to be leaders in helping their own neighborhoods overcome food problems.
  • Indy Food Fund: Supports programs that increase access to nutritious food and strengthen the local food system, including community gardens, urban farms, healthy food programs, farmers markets, farm stands, healthy corner stores, and local grocer initiatives.
  • Seed to Store: Offers grants to minority-owned urban farms to develop distribution and production, with the goal of increasing access to locally-grown produce.