Socially Responsible Companies: Hunger in Advanced Financial Economies is a Reality for Many

During the Second World War socially responsible organisations like the British Red Cross and Order of St John worked together as the Joint War Organisation to help wounded and sick servicemen by sending food parcels. By the end of the war they had sent over 20 million much needed food packs.  After the war, in Britain, food was still rationed, and many families relied on food parcels that would arrive from as far off as Canada. Today, in advanced financial economies in countries like the U.K. and the U.S., food parcels from food banks are still needed and have become the life-line to many living below the poverty line who cannot afford to eat.

Some social experts believe that food banks help prevent crime, housing loss, family breakdown and mental health problems. A simple box of food makes a big difference. All food is donated by the public and sorted by volunteers.

In the U.K. alone, 13 million people live below the poverty line. Every day people go hungry for reasons from redundancy to receiving an unexpected bill while living on a low income.  In 2011-12 national figures show that U.K. food banks fed 128,687 people nationwide, a 100 per cent increase than the previous year. Rising costs of food and fuel combined with static income, high unemployment and changes to benefits are causing more and more people to seek food banks for help.

In the U.S. for one in six people, hunger is a reality. Many think that that the problems associated with hunger are confined to small pockets of society or certain neighbourhoods. Yet the truth is very different today: millions of Americans are struggling with hunger. Often, hard-working adults, children and seniors who simply cannot make ends meet are forced to go without food for several meals, or even days.

This is why this story, which includes the MGM Resorts International employees who completed the largest employee-donated canned food drive organised by Three Square Food Bank, an organisation set up to end hunger in Southern Nevada, is such a winner. This initiative ensured the delivery of more than 189 tons of donated canned food and will provide more than 281,500 meals to about 100,000 individuals. This is the third year where the MGM Resorts staff has helped drive things forward. In a special ceremony to mark this milestone, MGM Resorts and Three Square celebrated at the “MGM Resorts Volunteer Room,” a room at the heart of the food distribution process. Jim Murren, Chairman & CEO of MGM Resorts International, says, “As a leader in the hospitality industry and a socially responsible corporation, we make it our mission to not only extend service to the guests of our properties but to those in our communities who are in need.”

Photo Credit: Clear Link Cares

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