Couple donates to OC Food Bank in lieu of wedding gifts
Gerardo Okhuysen and Chris Pounds celebrated their wedding this summer with friends and family. In lieu of a traditional gift registry the couple requested donations to be made to the OC Food Bank, a program of Community Action Partnership of Orange County.
“We chose the OC Food Bank for our wedding registry because we wanted gifts that make a difference,” stated Gerardo. “We have been fortunate to have amazing friends and family who expressed a wish to give us something meaningful for our wedding and, while a place setting or a beautiful serving dish are great ways to express love and appreciation, for us a more meaningful gift was support for a cause that we hold dear.”
The couple, who have been together for 18 years, both came from communities similar to Orange County where persistent hunger and food insecurity are common. Gerardo said they focus their efforts on supporting hunger relief organizations because, “we believe that caring for others who are hungry and suffering is a deep responsibility for all of us.”
Today, Orange County is one of the top 10 counties or metropolitan areas in the entire United States where food insecurity is most rampant for those under the age of 18 right next to Los Angeles, New York, Houston, and Chicago (PBS NewsHour, Jan. 24, 2014). Our OC Food Bank places priorities on becoming California’s leader in eliminating hunger and poverty by providing emergency food assistance to low-income Orange County residents and works with nearly 400 local charities to distribute 18 million pounds of food annually that feed hungry children, families, seniors, and veterans.
“We see the fear of going hungry as destructive and debilitating, affecting kids at school, parents at their jobs and homes, and all of society,” said Chris. “We may not be able to fix every problem people face, but we can give a child the food that they need so they can be successful at school and give parents some relief from worrying about having enough food for everyone at dinner. This, we feel, is a great cause.”
As we approach the 2014 holiday season, Community Action Partnership of Orange County is beginning its Hope for the Holidays Campaign, providing children, families, and seniors impacted by poverty with holiday meals, winter clothing, and toys for children. If you are interested in information on how you can help end hunger during this holiday season and feed Orange County’s low-income children, please contact (714) 897-6670 x3404, [email protected], or visit www.capoc.org/h4h. Together, we can eliminate hunger and poverty in Orange County.