Today is Food Day.  It’s a time to celebrate all the initiatives that are happening around the country, both big and small, that are moving us ever closer to a system of food production and distribution that will be healthier, more equitable, and more accessible to all.  In the past, I’ve celebrated Food Day with a group of my favorite blogging friends, by hosting virtual progressive dinners where we share recipes and a few laughs.  This year, I thought we might do something different.  Something more tangible…something that involves all of you.

Today I’m proud to announce the launch of the Second Helpings project, a simple initiative my friend and blogger Bettina Siegel of The Lunch Tray is piloting with me.  We’re asking that you all help us to celebrate Food Day by doing one thing, whether large or small, grand or humble, one thing to spread the mission of Food Day and of food bloggers like ourselves.  Between now and Thanksgiving, take a moment to act on one of the following goals:

  • Feed a hungry person
  • Provide a meal to a busy family in need (it doesn’t have to be financial need; we all know families who need a dinner or two because of illness, job loss, a new baby, or some other stress)
  • Support a small farmer or food assistance program
  • Help change policy about food and hunger assistance
  • Raise awareness about child nutrition, food allergies, or another food-related issue you care about
  • Provide a healthy food option to someone who could use it.

You can do one thing, or many things.  You can be creative and bold, or you can remember to slip a few dollars into the Food Bank donation container at your supermarket checkout.  You can bring canned goods to your local food pantry or a covered dish to an elderly neighbor.  Whatever you choose will be perfect, because this is YOUR action.  And a hundred small actions can add up to a big bunch of good in a very short period of time.

Whenever you perform a “Second Helping,” share it with us.  You can post it in the comments on this blog, share on the Facebook page for either Red, Round, or Green or The Lunch Tray, or shout it out on Twitter with the hashtag #secondhelpings.  Let us, and everyone else, know what you’ve done!  And if you want to go the extra mile, copy and paste this message into an email, text message, or Facebook status for your friends:

Guess what I just did?  I __________________ as part of the #secondhelpings project.  We’re raising awareness about hunger, food distribution, and food policy in the United States by making small changes that everyone can be thankful for.  I’d love to see you get involved, too!  Feel free to ask me about it, or get more information at Red, Round, or Green or The Lunch Tray.

Just before Thanksgiving, Bettina and I will both be posting round-ups of all the Second Helpings reports we’ve received.  I’m looking forward to that post, when I can take a moment to sit back and appreciate all the wonderful people who read our blogs and have taken the initiative to do something to make the world just a little bit better.  Your Second Helpings will give us all something to be thankful for.