My family and I are now approximately halfway through our week of living on a food stamp budget and so far, we all seem to be coping well. The biggest difference I have noticed to this point is that not only are we eating less frequently than usual, but that out of necessity we have reduced our portion sizes to try and make our food supply last longer. I imagine this is ubiquitous among food stamp recipients.
Both prior to and during the challenge, the most common question I am asked is simply “why?” What is the purpose of undertaking the challenge and can one truly identify with a lifestyle only living it for one week? In fact, the question made me examine my own motivations for participating. The last thing I want is for people to view this as a gimmick designed to attract personal attention. I therefore believe it is important to set forth the primary reasons why this challenge — and the publicizing of it — is so important.
Standing alone, our living on a food stamp budget for one week is inconsequential. However, our primary goals are, and always have been, raising of both funds and awareness for the cause. And those goals are certainly not mutually exclusive in that increased awareness leads to additional financial contributions. To date, I am proud to say that we have raised over $2,000 (and counting) and I am certain that the added attention generated both through my blog and these columns in the Daily Record have led directly to an increase in donations.
For those interested in offering financial support, I would encourage you to visit www.foodstampchallenge.com and make a donation to this very worthwhile cause. If this column spurs even one reader to make a donation, then both our participation in the challenge and my chronicling of it will have been a success.
Neil Dubovsky is an attorney with Fedder and Garten, a full service law firm located in Baltimore. His practice concentrates in the areas of general, commercial and real estate litigation. Read more on his blog.