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Two recent KNOW Hunger Nutrition Fairs conducted in Vicksburg and Jackson drew 40 local organizations and more than 800 participants. The events, part of the Urban League-Tyson Foods Hunger Project Mississippi, provided free food and health screenings, nutritious cooking and exercise demonstrations plus access to programs for the underserved. 

A donation of 34,000 pounds of food kicked off the fairs. It was given to the Mississippi Food Network from the Urban League of Greater Jackson, Jackson State University and Tyson Foods.

 There were a lot of great moments, and some of the highlights are available here. But it’s increasingly clear the most important gathering is ongoing.

 There has been a proliferation of organizations and resources aimed at curbing hunger for Mississippi, which leads the nation in food insecurity. Several groups have been at it awhile, and here are a few of the lead entities engaged at present:

There are others, including a growing number of efforts by political leaders. Lasting success will likely require a coalition of public and private entities working together.

 There will be at least two more opportunities this fall that can help lend traction. The Urban League-Tyson Foods Hunger Project will conduct a SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) Challenge on Nov. 13 in Jackson, and a day later The Mississippi Food Policy Council is holding a conference.

 Contact those organizations for more information, and also take a minute to visit all of these groups and see where your own effort might fit in. There’s plenty of room at the table for those who want to make a real difference.

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