The problem of hunger persists in all corners
Thanksgiving is upon us again and Feeding America, the nation’s largest domestic hunger-relief organization, estimates that one in seven people in our nation utilizes its network of food banks.
This number applies even in one of the richest places in the world — Silicon Valley — where the tech explosion has fueled skyrocketing rent and mortgage costs that have cast many longtime residents into near or actual homelessness.
Kiesow told me that, counter to the stereotypes about who goes hungry in America, in the heart of Silicon Valley, homelessness and hunger are not exclusively linked to unemployment:
For the second year in a row, Cityteam is partnering with the San Jose Earthquakes soccer team to host a Thanksgiving food giveaway at Avaya Stadium, a venue big enough for staging truckloads of food that will eventually become food boxes filled with fresh produce, canned goods and a choice of turkey or chicken. It’s also big enough to host the huge crowds that are expected to show on the Tuesday before Thanksgiving for the complimentary food boxes.
Cityteam was serving between 1,300 and 1,400 people at its own facility but logistical difficulties led it to partner with the Earthquakes. In 2015, the two organizations doubled the number of families served to 3,000 and are expecting up to 5,000 this year.
Kiesow said that it’s important to illustrate what’s going on in Silicon Valley because it isn’t a clearly delineated tale of haves and have-nots.
Not enough of us consider such questions, but the intractability of the march of technological progress needn’t impede us from helping those who haven’t been enriched by it.