At CNSI, there are very few things more important to us than giving back to the communities where we live and work. To help create our corporate social responsibility program, we solicited input so we could identify the causes that mean the most to our employees. One of the three issues of focus identified was hunger, and what better way to combat hunger in the D.C. metro area than partner with organizations like Miriam’s Kitchen and the Capital Area Food Bank (CAFB)?
CNSI has supported both over the last few years, and last week we were honored to sponsor theBethesda Empty Bowls event, as part of the CAFB D.C. tour. The Empty Bowls Tour partners local artists, who contribute hand-made soup bowls, with area restaurateurs, who provide delicious cuisine-style soups. Local businesses, volunteer groups, and even walk-ins attended an afternoon filled with a lot of food and even more heart. Guests got to pick out and keep an artisan bowl, receive a hearty meal, and learn more about what is being done – and can be done – to fight hunger in the D.C., Maryland, and Virginia (DMV) area. Since both the bowls and the food were donated, all proceeds went directly to the CAFB.
Even though this was the first Empty Bowls to be hosted in Maryland, it was an astounding success. There were more than 350 people who attended the Bethesda event, and a total of about 700 for the entire tour.
Between the three events, more than $37,000 was raised, enough money to provide more than 92,000 meals for DMV residents. But the work is far from finished. Last year, the food bank distributed 42 million pounds of food to nearly 700,000 individuals at risk of hunger, an 11 percent increase over 2010.
We are proud of our support and look forward to helping the CAFB in the future. We encourage both our staff and readers to get involved as well, whether it is taking a tour, volunteering at a shelter, or helping spread the word. And if you’re looking to learn more about the food insecurity problem in the area, check out CAFB’s innovative Hunger Heat Map. The high-tech analysis tool allows the CAFB (and you at home) to visualize, study, and respond to the dynamic needs of our low-income population. It’s a solution we, as a company dedicated to improving health outcomes through IT, wholeheartedly support.
What does it mean to you to give back to your community? Visit us on Twitter @CNSICorp to join the conversation.