Have you heard about the SNAP Challenge? It’s sponsored by Feeding America to raise awareness of the issue of hunger in America. Participants are challenged to eat on $4.50/per day (per person), the average amount of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits. SNAP is intended to supplement a families food budget, but the harsh reality is that for some families, the assistance makes up the entire budget. I’m not going to argue whether this is right or wrong – it’s just a fact of life, one that I think we all should be aware of.
At one time, I actually tried to keep my food budget around this amount. It’s not impossible to do, but it does require some willpower and planning. My food budget has gradually been creeping upwards, partially because I’ve been trying to eat healthier but mostly due to laziness. The official rules state that you shouldn’t use any staples you currently have – I don’t think that’s entirely realistic. My plan is to use what I have but calculate the daily totals and keep the average below $31.50 for the week. You are also not supposed to take food offered by friends, family, or co-workers. While I don’t plan to make a habit of it, if someone wants to bring me Greek food for lunch, I’m not going to decline.
I’m starting the challenge today, September 11 and will continue through Wednesday, September 17. Will you join me?