A new donor in the U.S. who prefers to remain anonymous, recently shared how he decided to start supporting our mission. Here is his story.
I am the son of Middle Eastern immigrants and was raised in the United States. I have been fortunate to have a life of peace, comfort, and stability. However, given my roots, poverty has never been far from my mind. My father worked hard—sometimes 100 hours per week—so that he could give me and my siblings opportunities for success.
The family often traveled, visiting the Middle East, Asia, Europe, and Latin America, which always gave us a sense of perspective. We never lost sight of the fact that hunger knows no borders. Whether you grow up in Mexico or Syria, the pangs of hunger hurt all same. We know what a blessing it is to come home to a warm meal every day.
Earlier this year, I finally decided to make good on a personal goal of mine to feed 10,000 people. It was especially important to me to find a charity that does good work without frills. I didn’t feel comfortable donating to charities that operate in the Middle East and Africa, because it is so difficult to ensure that the donations reach their intended audience.
I researched some of the best-known charities in the United States, but I was unhappy about the large amounts of money spent on administration and marketing. A little further digging also revealed that oftentimes the food such charities provide consists of items like Pop Tarts and hot dogs, and that it is not uncommon for expired foods to make it into the mix. Even when I identified some of the better-run organizations in the US, I was disappointed to find that my dollars couldn’t go as far as I had hoped.
That was when it occurred to me that there may be organizations worth contributing to “next door” — in Mexico. A quick Google search led me to Feed the Hungry San Miguel’s website. I reached out to the organization to inquire about its operations and was shortly put in touch with its communications director, Paola. What followed was a series of exchanges in which I (politely) grilled her about every aspect of the charity!
My concerns about donating were immediately allayed by her complete openness and transparency about their operations. She put me in touch with the finance team so that I could learn how donations are spent. She also took the time to explain exactly what sort of meals the organization provides to its beneficiaries, and how these meals are designed with good nutrition in mind. I cannot stress enough how comforted I was by her openness in answering difficult questions and how clear it was that FTH is an organization that does its work with honesty and integrity.
I made my first donation a couple of weeks after getting in touch with Paola. I am so proud of the work that FTH does and to be able to support it. I have always had the privilege of knowing that I don’t have to go to sleep on an empty stomach. Being able to provide some relief for those who don’t have this privilege, I can honestly say is one of the best things I have ever done. I hope FTH is able to continue the incredible work it does with our steady support.