Monday, October 25, 2021

Rep. Melanie Stansbury Joins House Hunger Caucus

Rep. Melanie Stansbury formally became a member of the  US House Hunger Caucus in September of this year. She is the third consecutive congressperson from the New Mexico First Congressional district to join this House body. Her two predecessors, former Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham (now governor of New Mexico) and former Rep. Deb Haaland (now federal Interior Secretary) were also members of the House Hunger Caucus, as was former Rep. Ben Ray Lujan of the Third Congressional District. Interestingly enough, Sen. Lujan is still listed as a member of the House Hunger Caucus, even though he is in the Senate (More on that later). Perhaps Rep. Teresa Leger-Fernandez could follow in Rep. Lujan's footsteps. If you're a constituent of Rep. Leger Fernandez, send her a note urging her to join the House Hunger Caucus.

Rep. Stansbury is a natural for the House Hunger Caucus. Before her election to the US House, she worked tirelessly as a state representative to coordinate a new approach in New Mexico to address hunger in our state. She promoted an omnibus bill that would bring together all the elements needed to address hunger in New Mexico. This created the blueprint for anti-hunger efforts going forward. 

And one of her first actions after her swearing-in ceremony to the US House was to speak out in favor of making the Child Tax Credit permanent.

What is the Hunger Caucus? 

A caucus by definition is comprised of a group of members of Congress that meets to pursue common legislative objectives. According to the Congressional Research Service, caucuses are formed as congressional member organizations (CMOs) both in the House and the Senate. The legislative bodies are governed under the rules of the two chambers. 

Unlike formal committees, caucuses do not have authority to craft legislation. They primarily intend to provide a forum for members to demonstrate their willingness to work together on a particular issue such as addressing hunger in the United States. While highly symbolic, they also contribute to the national conversation. For example, in December of 2020, House Hunger Caucus co-chair Rep. Jim McGovern, a Democrat from Massachusetts, urged then President-elect Joe Biden to to appoint a “hunger czar” to develop, coordinate, and implement a national strategy to reduce food insecurity in America. 

"I have long maintained that hunger is a political condition, and the choices our leaders make have a profound and direct impact on whether or not Americans families will live in fear of not knowing where their next meal will come from. Ending hunger is not only a moral obligation; there is also a tremendous cost to our country for our indifference," McGovern said in a letter to Biden.

Caucus Co-Chair Jackie Walorski, R-Ind., has also spoken in favor of policies to address hunger in our country. “Access to plentiful, nutritious food plays a key role in health and wellness and can help families and communities build stronger futures," Walorski said during a commemoration of World Food Day in 2020. “I’m honored to support the designation of a World Food Day and renew my commitment to addressing hunger, food insecurity, and malnutrition in the U.S. and across the globe. As co-chair of the bipartisan House Hunger Caucus, I’ll continue working to make nutrition a priority in Congress.”

Here are other quotes from legislators, including some members of the Hunger Caucus, on World Food Day 2020

To be sure, the House Hunger Caucus aims to be a bipartisan body.  Here is the current listing, courtesy of Rep. McGovern's office. The listing does not include party affiliation, but a few of these legislators are members of the Republican Party.

Kind, Ron


Lawrence, Brenda L.


Courtney, Joe


Pallone, Frank


Matsui, Doris


Lofgren, Zoe


Costa, Jim


Norton, Eleanor Holmes


Carson, Andre


DeLauro, Rosa


Doyle, Mike


Lee, Barbara


Aguilar, Pete


Smith, Adam


Cleaver II, Emanuel


Carbajal, Salud


Deutch, Ted


Kildee, Dan


Huffman, Jared


Adams, Alma


Larsen, Rick


Pingree, Chellie


Maloney, Carolyn


Lujan, Ben Ray


Connolly, Gerald


Raskin, Jamie


Ryan, Tim


Jackson-Lee, Sheila


Welch, Peter

VT At-Large

Green, AL


Speier, Jackie


Maloney, Patrick


Larson, John


Lynch, Stephen


Bishop, Sanford


Lowenthal, Alan


Scott, Robert "Bobby"


McCollum, Betty


Neal, Richard


Bonamici, Suzanne


DeFazio, Peter


Doggett, Lloyd


McGovern, James P.


Sablan, Gregorio Kilili Camacho


Delbene, Suzanne


Clark, Katherine


Johnson, Eddie Bernice


Kuster, Ann McLane


Takano, Mark


Frankel, Lois


Schiff, Adam


Kaptur, Marcy


Price, David


Schakowsky, Jan


Spanberger, Abigail




Panetta, Jimmy


Lawson, Al


Dingell, Debbie


Kelly, Mike


Moolenaar, John


Walberg, Tim


Griffith, Morgan


Upton, Fred


Thompson, Glenn "GT"


Granger, Kay


Walorski, Jackie


Omar, Ilhan


Mann, Tracey


Stansbury, Melanie


What About the Senate Hunger Caucus?

Unlike the House, Senate groups receive neither official recognition nor funding from the chamber. But a Senate Hunger Caucus does exist, and co-chairs include high-profile senators: John Boozman (R-AR), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Bob Casey (D-PA), Dick Durbin (D-IL), and Roger Marshall (R-KS). "Living in the breadbasket of our nation, it can be difficult to comprehend the prevalence of hunger around the world. Yet hunger is real, and it threatens the future of millions of people every day,"  Sen. Jerry Moran (previously a co-chair of the caucus) said in his website.  

In addition to the co-chairs, the Senate Hunger Caucus is comprised of nine other senators. See listing.

Among recent actions, the caucus led a food drive in Congress in 2019.  In November 2020, Sen. Moran and a handful of his colleagues introduced a resolution to honor the World Food Program for receiving a 2020 Nobel Peace Prize.

Sen.  Ben Ray Lujan does not participate in the Senate Hunger Caucus (at least not yet), but he remains as an honorary member of  the House Hunger Caucus. We'll contact the staffs of Sen. Lujan and Heinrich to get in their insights on the Senate Hunger Caucus.

Monday, October 18, 2021

A Twitter Sampling of World Food Day 2021 Commemorations


Sunday, October 17, 2021

World Food Day Stories from New Mexico (2021)

Thank you for joining with us in New Mexico to observe World Food Day 2021. This year's theme is "Our Actions are our Future." Please refer to the guide below the video before, after and as you view the compilation of stories and prayers we offer to you this day. The stories promote two topics: challenges and sustainable solutions for indigenous communities in New Mexico and the work of organizations that help immigrants and refugees. In between these stories, we have powerful prayers, reflections and blessings from the Jewish, Din茅, Baha'i, Christian, Muslim and Sufi traditions.  


 Greeting and Introduction
Kara Bobroff
founding principal
Native American Community Academy

Prayer: Rabbi Min Kantrowitz, Congregation Nahalat Shalom

Indigenous Farm Hub   Corrales, N.M.
Alan Brauer, Tirzah Toya-Waconda

The Indigenous Farm Hub engages Indigenous communities in creating a network of farmers and families that will strengthen local and sustainable food systems by providing access to healthy foods, build prosperity for farmers and local communities through land reclamation, and reconnect the bond between language and culture to Indigenous practices of agriculture.

Donate Online.  Or send donations to Native American Community Academy 1000 Indian School Rd NW, Albuquerque, NM 87104 (In both cases, be sure to designate the donation for Indigenous Farm Hub)

Prayer: Kyle Jim, Din茅 Introspective

Din茅 Introspective  Shiprock, N.M.
Kyle Jim, Breanna Lameman
A non-profit 501(c)3 community based organization in Shiprock that has been in practice since 2017 and officially established in 2018. Services include social justice, environmental justice, digital justice, and food sovereignty. We are a Native-led and Native operated organization. We are composed of young Natives, farmers, scholars, educators, and community organizers in the Navajo Nation.

Tres Hermanas Farm  Albuquerque, N.M.
Wangu Niyonkuru, Peter Nardini, Octavio Ayala

Tres Hermanas works with the Albuquerque community of refugee farmers to ease integration and increase self-sufficiency by growing produce, accessing farmers markets, and improving English skills. "We are passionate about connecting people to place through the act of growing roots and producing food." Tres Hermanas is part of the Lutheran Family Services Rocky Mountains Refugee and Asylee program in Albuquerque.
Donate (via Lutheran Family Services) 

Prayer: Rev. Guillermo Yela, Iglesia Camino de Vida

El Calvario United Methodist Church/Resiliency Program 
Las Cruces, N.M.

Lupe Ortiz, Clair Campos & Leslie Kryder, Kyle Locke

The program addresses longer term, systemic issues in the community and toward more inclusive sustainable development solutions throughits Immigrant Advocacy Center based on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), a blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all. The program offers a commercial kitchen incubator, a community garden, legal assistance and basic “emergency” services ( food, clothing, shelter, transportation, financial assistance, social and medical support). 

Prayer: Gabriela Marques, Albuquerque Baha'i Community

Prayer: Dr. Mahmoud Eldenawi, Islamic Center of New Mexico

Sisters' Food Project (Islamic Center of New Mexico)  Albuquerque, N.M.
Dr. Mahmoud Eldenawi, Maryam Chudnoff, Aamna Nayyar, Yolanda Manzua (Albuquerque, N.M.)
The sisters have established a food and hygiene product distribution program, not only for the Muslim community, but for the Albuquerque community at large. Since April 2020, distribution has been Biweekly, and serves an average of 70-100 families. many of whom are immigrants, refugees and asylees., This program is completely supported by Volunteers, sponsors and community members.
(via the ICNM)

Prayer: Maziar Saleh Ziabar, M.T.O. Shahmaghsoudi® School of Islamic Sufism®

Prayer: Rev. Lynne Hinton, New Mexico Conference of Churches

World Food Day Song: Keri Sutter & David Poole
Producer: Carlos Navarro
Production Support: Leslie Kryder

Previously Published Videos: El Calvario United Methodist Church and ICNM Sisters Food Project
Music and Liturgical Dance: David Poole, Keri Sutter (Surgite :A Sacred Dance Company)

Introduction Kara Bobroff
Production Consultants: Ellen Buelow, Judy Messal

Special Thank Yous: Catalina Block, Rabbi Debra Brin, Pam Brown, Tarrie Burnett, Athena Cholas, New Mexico Interfaith Power & Light, Cynthia Renteria, Farid Sharifi, Nkazi Sinandele

Music Credits

Opening Sequence (and Closing)
World Food Day Song-New Mexico
composed by David Poole
performed by David Poole & Keri Sutter

This song downloaded via digccmixter
Background for Tres Hermanas segment
Like and Subscribe by Apoxode

These songs downloaded via Wikimedia Commons
Background for Indigenous Farm Hub
Concerto for Recorder
Antonio Vivaldi

Background for El Calvario segment
La Morena Son Jarocho
composed by–v Koffermejia

Background for Credits

composed by Robert Ravera D`Ange

Other Donation Opportunities: Surgite: A Sacred Dance Company, Roadrunner Food Bank  (Central & Southern New Mexico), The Food Depot (Santa Fe & Northern New Mexico),  ECHO Food Bank (Farmington/Four Corners), The Community Pantry (Gallup), Food Bank of Eastern New Mexico (Clovis)

Monday, August 16, 2021

La Mesa Presbyterian Church Food Pantry Lead Position

 Job Posting La Mesa Food Pantry Lead
La Mesa Presbyterian Church

Position Title: La Mesa Food Pantry Lead

The La Mesa Food Pantry opened in 2008 as a response to the hunger needs of the La Mesa community. That need grew during the pandemic - over the first 6 months of  2021, we have helped about 2,200 families giving out 15 tons of food. As the Lead for  the La Mesa Food Pantry, you will make sure the food gets to those families, with the  support of community partners and volunteers. Hunger can and should be eradicated; help make that a reality in the La Mesa community.

General Job Description: The La Mesa Food Pantry Lead is responsible for the organization and direction of the food pantry program (M-W-F). The Lead functions as a liaison between Roadrunner Food Bank (LMFP), La Mesa Presbyterian Church (LMPC), and all Food Pantry volunteers. The Lead is also the point person for all encounters with additional businesses and organizations providing goods, services, or grants to La Mesa’s Food Pantry.

 Requirement Qualifications:
Skills to accomplish program oversight and management with knowledge of food pantry operation.
Knowledge of how customer culture and diet affect food pantry operation.
Ability to work cooperatively and respectfully with very differing entities, church, and fundraising sources.
Administrative and logistical skills in ordering food, recordkeeping and analyzing pantry operations.
Be able to manage, lead and delegate tasks to a variety of volunteers and volunteer positions.
Writing and oral communication skills.
Meet the Presbyterian Church’s Safe Church Policy requirements.

Preferred Qualifications:
Language abilities in Spanish.
Experience in writing grants.
A college education, workshops, and/or prior experience working with food pantries.
Experience working with people experiencing homelessness.
Experience working with people in emotional/mental distress.

 Position Responsibilities:
In cooperation with the Pastor and staff of LMPC, and in communication with the LMPC Session:
1. Oversee the design and weekly operation of the La Mesa Food Pantry.
2. Create and follow a budget.
3. Apply for and administer grants. 

4. Work with the space provided at LMPC, determine delivery, storage and distribution solutions, within available finances.

5. Restock storage places with donations and deliveries.
6. Clean LMFP storage spaces, shelves and kitchen areas.
7. Recruit and oversee additional volunteers and support staff as needed.
8. Weekly communicate desired food list to grocery store buyers.
9. Schedule and secure 3 volunteers each M-W-F as possible.
10. Communicate with gleaners and support food drop-off from gleaners.
11. Manage and monitor food distribution to customers, and keep records of sign-ins.
12. Receive deliveries from Roadrunner food bank with volunteers.
13. Weekly manage ordering to and bookkeeping from Roadrunner food bank.
14. Write monthly reports to the LMPC Session on the LMFB distribution / finances and identify areas for improving efficiency and equity.
15. Identify and try to resolve issues of discrimination in customer service and food pantry design.
16. Monitor all safety issues including masked customers and volunteers.
17. Communicate regularly with LMPC and staff and the appropriate church committees by attending meetings, writing newsletter articles, writing bulletin announcements, connecting via electronic media (e-mail, texting, Facebook, etc.), and engaging in personal conversations as needed.
18. Participate in additional community boards or in enriching educational opportunities as are available and financially feasible for the benefit of the LMFP.

Hours of Employment: Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 8:30-11:30 plus 6 additional hours weekly. An average of 15 hours per week.

Compensation: Commensurate with experience and paid during a 12-month cycle.

Contact: Chair of the Personnel Committee at