This apparently simple question is deceptively complicated. Families everywhere grapple with “the dinner question” on a daily basis. What’s in the fridge? When is Mom getting home from work? Can the vegetable hating seven-year-old be convinced to eat something with tomato sauce?
And, increasingly, is there enough money in the checking account to stop at the store?
Dinner. In a fundamental way, dinner is a daily representation of the values of family life that Nebraskans care about so deeply. That’s why when struggles making ends meet hit the family dinner table, the angst is real, surprising, and difficult. And it is happening. Our friend and colleague Scott Young, the Executive Director of the Food Bank of Lincoln tells us that on a daily basis they hear from families asking “How do I get help for my family? We’ve never had to do this before.”
The economic downturn is clearly contributing to struggle in Nebraska – and Nebraska Appleseed is committed to being a part of economic recovery in our state. We are actively engaged in efforts to promote the best possible use of Recovery Act dollars in Nebraska: http://is.gd/12xj9 But economic recovery will take time. And the question “What’s for dinner?” is about as immediate as it gets.
That’s why Nebraska Appleseed is also committed to public policies that support, well, dinner. And breakfast. And lunch: http://neappleseed.org/food/ Most recently, we’ve worked with the Food Bank of Lincoln, the Food Bank of Omaha, and the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services to submit a federal grant to promote the food stamp program in Nebraska.
The idea that our nation, our state, our communities, and our families are stronger, healthier, and better able to reenter the economy when everyone can sit down to a good meal is one that we’re proud to continue to work for. We look forward to the day when “what’s for dinner?” can get down to the real debate – spaghetti vs. hamburgers. Thanks for supporting us in our ongoing efforts to get there.