Sep 20, 2009

the hunger challenge: day 1

This week I'm following the Hunger Challenge. I'll be taking the challenge Monday - Thursday, as Friday we have a out-of-town pre-wedding BBQ already planned. I'm taking part to help raise awareness about hunger in San Francisco. I'll be eating as healthy as possible on just $4 a day and trying to find new ways to stretch my food dollars. I plan to post every day this week to let you know how its going...

...I wrote this note last night (Sunday) prior to embarking on this challenge. Let me tell you this is a challenge and hunger is real, and I haven't made it through my first day. I had the best of intentions yesterday as I planned out my hunger challenge menu. Breakfast at $0.65 cents, lunch for $1.34, and dinner between Matt (who is joining me for dinners) and myself for $3.76.

The reality started to hit when I was walking to the office this morning and could not buy my normal chai tea for $2.50, not in the budget. By lunch I was famished and quickly inhaled my greens and beans, and later a plum that cost $0.37 cents. With no snacks in the budget for the the rest of the afternoon I was stomach growling hungry when I walked in the door at 6 p.m.

Unfortunately, I lost all resolve when I turned the faucet on at home only to find no water. Which I learned, after a bit of investigation to check out the trucks and digging up the street, was due to a broken water main that happened sometime today and that water is not slated to go on for another couple hours. Bam - I lost it. Back to the house I went, opened the cupboard and grabbed a snack.

Without water tonight to help make dinner I'm not sure what we'll do to stick to the budget. Do we try to make something sans water? Do we hit up the local dollar menu at the fast food place around the corner? If I had no other resources (meaning I could not go out to eat) how would I make a meal right now? If I had kids, how would I make it work?

Let me just say that my privilege is slapping me in the face today. What a wake up call. I'll let you know what we ended up doing for dinner tonight in tomorrow's post along with how well I can stick to my budget tomorrow.

Today I had the following for breakfast:

1 bag English Breakfast tea: $0.04
1/2 grapefruit: $0.34
1 hard boiled egg: $0.12
1/2 cup oatmeal: $0.15

total cost: $0.65

Here are three facts about the realities of hunger in San Francisco:

  • In San Francisco, 150,000 people are unsure where their next meal is coming from.
  • 1 in 4 San Francisco children lack regular access to the food they need to learn, grow and have a healthy start in life.
  • 1 in 5 San Francisco adults cannot count on the daily meals they need to lead healthy, productive lives.


Andrew said...

wow. good luck! -natasha

Alison said...

Thanks - it was a tough couple days, but well worth it in the end.