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'Go Orange' on Thursday to Fight Hunger
Posted on: 09/03/2013
By  Andy Rex
Hunger affects 1 in 6 Americans and 1 in 4 Ohioans.
Locally, Marietta College, Peoples Bank, and the Memorial Health System have teamed up to create a task force to help combat hunger, called Hunger Solutions for the Mid-Ohio Valley. They’re planning an awareness event on Thursday – more on that in a moment.
WMOA News spoke with Marietta College President, Dr. Joe Bruno, who says the effort in bringing the three entities together began just after his arrival…
“I met with president Chuck Sulerzyski of the bank and Scott Cantley, president of the hospital.  We sat down together and they were very interested in having the college participate in something like this that’s so good for the community.  They didn’t have to ask me twice.  I thought it was a great idea.  It’s been a great partnership for us and (we’re) looking forward to continuing.”
Hunger Solutions primarily serves two purposes – helping to purchase supplies for area food banks, and educating people, especially children, about hunger.  Dr. Bruno says the latter is where the college is focusing its effort…
“If we can teach them about nutrition and healthy eating, that would be a big step in putting them on a life-long path toward avoiding hunger and realizing good health.  Primarily, from our perspective, students at Marietta College have been involved in working with elementary school kids to teach them about how to eat well.”
A statewide effort, led by Ohio First Lady Karen Kasich, is raising funds to support the Ohio Association of Food Banks and its twelve regional centers.  It continues through September 11. 
Dr. Bruno says Thursday is “Go Orange” Day, where people are being asked to wear orange in support of hunger awareness…
“For many of us who have all we need to eat, we begin to take it for granted.  I think it’s a very good reminder for our community and for people across the nation that there are still people in this day and age in the United States who don’t have enough food.  We forget that at our own peril.  I think it’s important for us to remember to be sensitive and to do what we can to alleviate the problem.  This is just a way to call our attention to it.”
And, Dr. Bruno says there are several ways people can get involved in the effort to fight hunger…
“The most obvious thing, of course, is to get involved with the local food banks, donate food, and go online and make gifts of food.  Then, volunteer and help to distribute.  The two big areas are finding enough food, but also, getting it distributed in an organized fashion to the people who need it.  I think that all of us have an opportunity to step up and make that more effective.”
People are encouraged to wear orange on Thursday to support the awareness effort.  
For more information on Hunger Action Month, visit www.ohiofoodbanks.org/feedohio.
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