The second annual Million Meals Marathon will be held Saturday and Sunday for 24 hours in Lot 1 of the Pasadena City College campus off of Hill Avenue.
The ‘marathon’ is a food drive aimed at collecting non-perishable food items for humans and pets too.
“With the downturn in the economy, joblessness and many people finding themselves in difficult financial situations, the animal shelters have seen a rise in pet surrenders because people cannot afford to feed their pets,” said Barbara Freund, the primary event organizer and Dean of PCC School of Allied Health.
Despite the stereotype that Americans are overweight, that doesn’t outweigh the fact that hunger is a real problem in America and is “deeply felt,” said Freund.
More than 49 million people suffered from food insecurity in their households in the U.S. in 2013, according to a survey from feedingamerica.org.
Last year the food drive collected more than 1,500 pounds of food and Freund hopes to at least double that number this year. Every dollar donated is equal to four meals.
All of the proceeds go to the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank and the Pasadena Humane Society and SPCA.
“The L.A. Food Bank got its start in Pasadena [and] supplies over 600 food pantries in the greater Los Angeles area including several in Pasadena so it made sense to target them,” Freund said.
Last year the school community was able to substantially support the food drive despite the limited amount of time they had to prepare. This year, it is hopeful that the turnout will be even greater and the PCC community can do its part to help fight the struggle against hunger.
“Over 1.7 million people (400,000 of them children) experience hunger in Los Angeles County,” Freund said. “It just seemed appropriate to me that we should assist in the efforts to alleviate hunger among our neighbors.”