The week of Thanksgiving social media feeds, news shows and conversations are mainly focused on the main centerpiece of the holiday – food. We talk about recipes, how to cook the perfect turkey and what new outrageous dish is making headlines – PumPecApple pie cake anyone? Thanksgiving day is becoming one of the most popular days of the year to exercise, as an effort to burn a few extra calories and shed some of the guilt we may be feeling later in the day when we try to fit everything on our plate. However, this is not the reality for everyone and in New Mexico hunger is a real problem for adults and children every day of the year – even Thanksgiving. As we celebrate the holiday with family and friends, our Lovelace family rolled up their sleeves and got to work a little early this year to make the holiday special for those who don’t always find their plates full.
Dozens of volunteers from Lovelace Medical Center and Lovelace Women’s Hospital donated their time and talents repackaging rice and cereal, stuffing envelopes, processing produce, pulling bulk orders, labeling jars of jalapeños, and weighing, bagging, labeling, and boxing pinto beans at the Road Runner Food Bank of New Mexico. “Lovelace Health System continually serves our community; it’s actually part of our mission,” shares Director of Lovelace Organizational Development Jim Hughes. What they accomplished in a mere few hours would have taken Food Bank staff at least three weeks to prepare to help feed New Mexico’s hungry. “We are proud of the positive impact we made towards feeding the hungry in our state. However, I would say that the effort had a much farther-reaching impact within us all. This was a truly a meaningful experience that allowed our compassion to really shine.”
Every year the Food Bank distributes more than 26 million pounds of food to a network of hundreds of partner agencies and four regional food banks to help serve the more than 400,000 people who go hungry. Lovelace is thankful to be a Food Bank partner to help end hunger in our state and make every day, especially during the holidays, a day the adults and children of our community better their health through nourishment and nutrition.