The holidays are full of snowfall, cooler temps, warm drinks and incredible merriment. But thousands of people don’t get the chance to celebrate. Beyond that, thousands upon thousands in Michigan suffer from food insecurity.

Food insecurity is the state of being without steady access to a sufficient quantity of affordable, nutritious food. In simpler terms, it’s not knowing where your next meal will come from. According to Todd Powell, food resources manager at the Greater Lansing Food Bank, “The greatest myth about food insecurity is that clients have done something to cause their hardships. In fact, many of the individuals most at need have been contributing to society all along. They just need a helpful boost.”

The winter months are an especially tough time of need. Over 60,000 of those in need live in the tri-county area: Clinton, Eaton, and Ingham counties.

“Many clients are torn between paying heat and energy bills, medication costs, or food for their families,” Powell said. “Those on a strict budget are often overwhelmed by auto repairs or unforeseen household expenses.”

The Greater Lansing Food Bank covers seven counties and in 2016 served 6.64 million meals to those in need. It sees individuals and families from all walks of life with seniors, veterans and children making up the bulk. In 2017, with the help of 140+ partner agencies — along with Feeding America and generous donors — the Greater Lansing Food Bank has provided well over 7 million meals.

The community can help by donating funds vital to the operation of the Greater Lansing Food Bank and organizations like it. The Holiday Envelope Campaign continues through Jan. 30. For more information, visit

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