Speaking for Those Who Can’t Speak for Themselves: A Hunger Justice Leader Finds Her Voice
Bread for the world -September 2012
Forty-five percent of children in Ohio were eligible for the National School Lunch Program this year, but many of those children went without meals during the summer. That fact strikes close to home for Columbus, OH, speech therapist Shannon Schlagbaum, who works with children in the public schools. Shannon knows about the toll that hunger takes.
“It affects children I know and love,” said Shannon, a member of Bread for the World since 2007.
Those children were prime motivators for Shannon to come to our nation’s capital this June for training as a Hunger Justice Leader — along with 75 other young activists. The training, conducted by Bread for the World, steeped participants in the biblical foundations of anti-hunger advocacy and honed their skills in creative community organizing.
The workshops culminated in Lobby Day 2012, during which Hunger Justice Leaders joined other Bread activists to lobby their members of Congress on behalf of hungry and poor people.
“It was a wonderful experience,” said Shannon, who is also a Sunday school teacher at Vineyard Church, a nondenominational evangelical congregation in Columbus. “I believe that by changing policies and programs, we can provide help beyond the community in which we live.”