Pillar Name: Feed The Hungry
Pillar lead – Br. Abbas Shah
The Prophet Muhammad said, “Charity is a proof”. It is a proof of your belief. How you give to others is the very proof of your creed, your own faith. Feeding those that are hungry, according to the Quran (and previous scriptures), has always been important to God, and therefore to those who believe in Him. People and communities of faith have a responsibility to meet the needs of the poor and hunger. Feed the needy!In this modern age of increasing obesity and satiety, it is inexcusable that we have people dying of starvation. To quote, “There is more fruit in a rich man’s shampoo, than a poor man’s plate. Feed the needy!
Feeding the Hungry is one amongst several pillars of charity that the East Plano Islamic Center (EPIC) erected under its EPIC CARES program and is dedicated to the mission of ending hunger by partnering up with local food banks and pantries to provide access to daily meals for hungry children, seniors, families of the DFW community.Just as the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) fed on average 70 people each day, and Prophet Jesus repeatedly shared meals with “tax collectors and sinners”, people that the rest of society largely ignored or despised, so too we shall follow in their blessed footsteps.
- Partner up with local food banks and pantries to regularly source volunteers to serve Dallas and surrounding counties to fight hunger.
- Help local food distribution centers in the periodic sorting and packing of food at the facility.
- Hit the road and assist food banks in their mobile efforts to bring food to the front door of those that are homebound or with disabilities.
- Step up EPIC CARES own Feeding the Hungry drives in the Holy Month of Ramadan.
- Partner with food banks and schools to deliver shelf-stable food and produce to inner city elementary schools and other facilities.
- Leverage solutions as outlined by the Dallas Coalition for Hunger Solutions and take appropriate action.
- Texas ranks #2 in nationally in food-insecure population. More than 4.65 million Texans last year—including nearly 1.9 million children—had limited or uncertain access to enough food for a healthy lifestyle, a study by Feeding America revealed.
- One in every six individuals of all ages (517,800) faces food insecurity.
- One in every four kids in North Texas is food insecure. In Dallas County alone, there are approximately 179, 020 children who are food insecure, meaning they have a lack of access at times to enough food for an active, healthy life.
- Food insecure children are sick more often and are more likely to suffer developmental delays.
- In North Texas, 1 in 6 food-insecure households is home to a veteran
- Unemployment is the primary driver of food insecurity….without income that comes from a job, people often lack the resources to purchase an adequate amount of food.
- Dallas’ poor population has exploded over the past couple of years.
- More children are living in high-poverty following the Great Recession.
- Level of food assistance (i.e. food stamps) given to families isn’t enough for a month’s worth of meals.
Making a Difference
The coming together of various organizations in local hunger relief efforts is key to fighting the good fight in ending food insecurity and hunger. EPIC aims to be in the middle of it all. Our Muslim community, as with all other faith-based communities, can and will make a difference TOGETHER. Every congregation must take action and leverage the tried and tested solutions to the problem of hunger. These solutions exist in the community, require limited financial support, and they need the support of local congregations that can make an impact.
The North Texas Food Bank (NTFB) is a top-ranked nonprofit relief organization, providing access to more than 190,000 meals each day for hungry children, seniors and families through a network of more than 1,000 programs and 200 Partner Agencies in our 13-county service area. In fiscal year 2016, NTFB provided access to some 70 million meals but the need for hunger relief in North Texas today is much larger. To combat increasing food insecurity in North Texas, the Food Bank recently launched a 10-year plan to provide access to 92 million nutritious meals annually by 2025. NTFB is a member of Feeding America, a national hunger relief organization.
Partner under assessment at this time.