It Breaks My Heart


To the editor:

Nothing saddens me more than to hear about hungry children. Seventeen years ago when my wife, Patty and I moved to Dillon, the ratio used at that time was; “One in every five”. Yes, one in every five children in Montana is hungry.

Does this mean the Beavers varsity football team are state champs playing with five or six of them hungry? Or could the varsity boys’ basketball team have been state champions if one of the first five wasn’t hungry?

With all the hands reaching for assistance in the state of Montana, food banks seem to hold their own. So where is the problem?

Patty and I have helped a little by sending some dollars to Missoula, you know, “A dollar helps feed a family for three days.” We have placed bags of non-perishables on the table at Safeway and by our mailbox, helped sort food at Dillon’s Food Bank and have donated venison.

Many individuals and companies donate their time, money and food. Fish, Wildlife and Parks donate confiscated game to food banks throughout the state. The “School Backpack” program has been successful, but one participant recently stated, “There are more hungry kids than we thought!” Does the “one in five” ratio remain?

Jeff Bridges recently visited a Montana school, stating that this area was like home to him and offered assistance to hungry children. Will this solve the problem? What about all the famous, wealthy land owners in Montana, do they help?

Last year a truck load of ready to cook chickens was donated to a Montana food bank, so where do the programs fall short? Is there a missing link? Does someone need to prepare and deliver the meals? Maybe like “Meals on Wheels”? Will hunger, along with the lack of housing, heat and clothing, prevail in Montana?

Truly a million-dollar question I would like to have the answer to!

Tom Hough