Your dollar, time, and services will make a difference at these vetted organizations.
Credit: Giving Tuesday

In the midst of the holiday madness, it can be nice to take a step back from the shopping, entertaining, and celebrating and pay it forward to causes that are important to you. That’s the whole point of Giving Tuesday, the international day of giving that falls five days after Thanksgiving in the wake of Black Friday and Cyber Monday.

While there are thousands of different charities you can choose to support, those related to food hit home for many of us, especially during this eating-centric time of year. So in anticipation of Giving Tuesday 2018, we’ve rounded up a list of seven national food-related charities, ranging from youth nutrition education to elderly meal services to hunger-free advocates.

All of them received the highest rating—4 stars—from Charity Navigator, an organization that evaluates thousands of nonprofits through the lenses of financial health, accountability, and transparency, which means any dollars, time or services donated will be well spent.

Hunger Free America

  • About: This goal of this advocacy and service-oriented non-profit is to enact the policies and programs needed to end hunger in America and ensure all Americans have access to healthy food. Their motto—“ending hunger lifts us all”—explains the founding belief that the problem of hunger affects not just the hungry, but society as a whole. Hunger Free America strives to meet the food needs of low-income Americans while promoting solutions to help them achieve greater economic self-sufficiency.
  • Get Involved: You can volunteer at various local events across the country, and tax-deductible donations support anti-hunger solutions at the city, state and national levels. Per the organization website, 91% of donations go directly to program expenses.
  • More Information:

Action Against Hunger USA

  • About: This global humanitarian organization, founded nearly 50 years ago in France, takes “decisive action against the causes and effects of hunger,” to help malnourished children and ensure everyone can access clean water, food, training, and healthcare. In 2017, the organization reached more than 20 million people in 45+ countries, per their website.
  • Get Involved: Donations are tax-deductible, and ninety-three percent of every dollar donated goes towards programming, per Action Against Hunger website.
  • More Information:

Action for Healthy Kids

  • About: This organization is a public-private partnership of more than 75 national organizations dedicated to promoting school health. They address the “epidemic of overweight, sedentary, and undernourished youth by focusing on changes in schools to improve nutrition and increase physical activity.”  Their vision: a world where all kids develop the lifelong habits necessary to promote health and learning.
  • Get Involved: You can volunteer at a local school near you, and tax-deductible donations provide schools with the tools needed to host physical activity, healthy food taste tests, nutritious breakfasts, and more.
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Meals on Wheels America

  • About: This national organization operates in nearly every community in the U.S. to address senior hunger and isolation. Volunteers in more than 5,000 community-based programs deliver 225 million meals to 2.4 million seniors in their homes every year, and a typical meal meets the dietary guidelines set by the Older Americans Act Nutrition Program.
  • Get Involved: Volunteer to deliver warm meals to seniors in your own community, and/or donate dollars to support the cause.
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Agriculture Future of America

  • About: This national organization works to create partnerships that identify, encourage and support college students preparing for careers in the agriculture and food industry. The AFA offers leader and career development training and community-based academic scholarships for said students with the overarching belief that “the production, processing and distribution of food and fiber, with support for agriculture business services, are vital for our nation's economy—both now and in the future.”
  • Get Involved: Volunteer your time to help local students and/or donate money to support programming.
  • More Information:

Center for Food Safety

  • About: CFS works to protect human health and the environment by curbing the spread of harmful food production technologies and by promoting organic and other forms of sustainable agriculture. CFS relies on litigation and legal petitions for rulemaking, legal support for sustainable agriculture and food safety constituencies, as well as public education, grassroots organizing and media outreach.
  • Get Involved: Lend your voice to various initiatives listed on the organization’s website, and/or make a tax deductible donation to help CFS “fight for healthy foods, farms, and environment.”
  • More Information:

Food Allergy Research and Education

  • About: FARE bills itself as “the world’s largest non-profit organization dedicated to food allergy awareness, education, research, and advocacy.” The group aims to help the 15 million Americans living with food allergies by providing information, programs, and resources about food allergies and anaphylaxis.
  • Get Involved: Take action by registering for a local fundraising walk, contacting lawmakers about allergy-related legislation, and donating dollars to support the mission.
  • More Information: