"At the end of the ride," Alexander observes, "we will take the funds we raise and divide them between two unique programs; programs which, in our estimations, show an excellent ability to generate a good return on our investments.
"First, we plan to give $25,000 to the Vero Beach's Harvest Food and Outreach Center [http://harvestfoodoutreach.org], which distributes low-cost food locally to those in need," says Rev. Alexander, citing a recent report from the Howard G. Buffett Foundation that 30.5 percent of Treasure Coast children (including Martin, St Lucie, Indian River, and Okeechobee Counties) are "food insecure." In other words, Alexander explains, "36,290 local youngsters do not know from where their next meal is coming."
This startling statistic is underscored by the most recent U.S. Census Bureau data which place the overall poverty rate in Florida's affluent Treasure Coast at 13 percent. "Current economic conditions are not helping to lower this statistic," Rev. Alexander observes. "Clearly, many local families experience hunger on a daily basis. We can help these families."
See a video about the important work of Harvest Food Outreach Center.
The second beneficiary of The Ride to Beat Hunger is Stop Hunger Now (http://stophungernow.org), an international organization that assembles millions of simple meal packets to be distributed around the world, primarily through school-feeding programs in hunger-stricken regions of the world.
Rev. Alexander is concerned that "long after the brouhaha of the bicycle ride dies down, we need to make certain the continuing needs of the hungry are not ignored." To keep the anticipated momentum alive, The Ride To Beat Hunger's leaders are planning a June 9, 2012 community-wide volunteer effort, Meal Packing Day, when local volunteers of all ages will assemble up to 200,000 meal packets for hungry children around the world. In cooperation with Stop Hunger Now, a special "meal packet assembly team" will come to Vero Beach and support this effort.
We want to share a powerful video message that will tell you more about the work of Stop Hunger Now.