The Incredible True Stories Of Child Hunger Behind The SP4K Murals

BY Ashley York | 11-30-2018

They say a picture is worth a thousand words. When you transform real stories of hunger, gratitude, and success into art, those thousand words become so much more impactful.


That was the thought behind the murals in the Amarillo SP4K warehouse. We wanted to give local artists the opportunity to take stories of kids who receive Snack Paks and bring them to life in a new way. The results have been astounding.


Local artists teamed up with SP4K to create everything from realism paintings that capture the raw, emotional pain of hunger in children to abstract pieces highlighting the transformation kids experience when they have access to quality food. They’re sharing these kids’ stories in ways words never could, and, as a result, they’re changing lives.


These are just a few of the incredible pieces of art showcased in the warehouse – and the true stories that inspired them.

 



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“Hunger is my least favorite word since about 4 years ago. It was a time when we didn’t have enough to feed all of the kids and adults. After all the kids ate, my parents had to share a plate. I would eat no more than half my plate and give it to my younger siblings.


Most nights, I went to bed hungry. My parents would cry because they felt like they had let us down. At school, I ate lots for breakfast and even lunch to be as full as possible, but I still was hungry at bedtime.


Then we started getting Snack Pak 4 Kids. It was a life-saver because me and my parents got to eat something at least. Then Mom finally got a job and we got back on track.”


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“When I’m hungry, I feel fire in my stomach.”


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"Dear Snack Paks,

I am thankful for you volunteering for us to have Snack Paks.


It is important because I have five other sisters and my mom and dad can't afford to feed all of us, but since I have it, they can start not worrying to feed us.


I feel happy to be receiving it because you gave your time to us by helping. I learned from your generosity that the generosity can spread. I feel encouraged by you, and I will spread that generosity.”

 

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“Hunger. What hunger means to me? Well, I know how it feels and what you go through. It’s not pretty. When I was younger, around 2 years old till I was 7, my mother, sister, and I didn’t always have food. Why didn’t we? It’s because my father used mostly all of the money on booze and cigarettes.


The only person that worked was my father, so when my father came back from work all tired, my mother would sneak money out of his wallet. With just $30 in hand and some coins, I had my mother, sister, and I go to La Lupita. We’d buy some beans, rice, tomatoes, and tortillas for food. With that little bit of food, we will have to make it last at least three weeks.


The only meal we had at home was dinner. Sometimes, we didn’t even have dinner. April and I will have to wait till the next morning. At school, we will eat our breakfast and lunch. My father will eat at work and my mother will eat at my grandma’s house down the street.


My mother did whatever she could to feed April and me. Later came my brother, Junior. We will ask for food donations and my grandma will help. Even at the age of 7, I did not know that we were poor and hungry.


My mother finally started working and within months we left the little house we lived in and moved to a better home. Throughout the year, my mother has provided food for April, Jr., and I.”


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“Someone who is hungry does not have food to eat. The refrigerator is just as empty as your stomach. I know this because I was once hungry. No food but my school meals. Some nights without dinner and long weekends of growling stomachs.


My dad was working at Owens Corning Fiber Glass Plant and was suddenly laid off. My house had drastic changes made since he made a large income. I can recall the first night my parents sent me to bed with no dinner. I was only 11 years old. The following weekend, we had only two meals that were small in size. My dad looked for work every day and, after several months of little amounts of food, he received unemployment.


Not long after, he soon found a job at a copper refinery where he is still employed today. The experience has made me more understanding to other people who are having a hard time in life. Whenever my church goes on missions to take food to people, I love to go so I can change someone’s life who was just like me in the past.”


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“Dear Snack Pak 4 Kids,


Thank you for the Snack Paks. They helped my stomach by growing strong. It also helps us kick the hunger away. My favorite foods in there were goldfish, milk, and peanuts.


I needed Snack Pak because it helps me grow strong. Thanks for every Snack Pak you gave me.”


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“What does hunger look like?


To me, by personal experience, I have had to go a couple of days without eating, also my family. Other times, we just eat a sandwich and maybe a pork chop. Real hunger feels like having your insides all crunched together.


Also, my friends don’t have much food either. For example, one of my friends a couple of days ago gave me a dollar just for a bag of chips. Also, a couple of weeks ago, I saw one of my neighbors who was only 9 years old digging through the dumpster for scraps.”


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“Thank you, Snack Pak persons!


Dear Snack Pak people,


Thank you for giving people in need a hand with food. I am so grateful that you guys spend your time making Snack Paks and delivering them to school. I really appreciate that you’re helping people in need, so, when I grow up, I want to lend a hand to kids in need of food.


Snack Pak persons, you really inspired me. Thank you.”


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Start A SP4K Program. Change Thousands Of Lives.


When you start a weekend hunger relief program, you’re doing so much more than just providing kids with food over the weekends. You’re helping them succeed in school, allowing them to fit in and make friends, and inspiring them to help other kids struggling with hunger.


Does your community have a SP4K program? Are kids in your city, neighborhood, or school growing hungry?


Starting a hunger relief program may sound daunting. But with the support of local schools, the help of eager volunteers, and the guidance of SP4K, you can create a sustainable program that can transform hungry kids’ lives for years to come. Our model is simple, easy to replicate, and can even be applied to existing programs.


Ready to get started? Download our free SP4K Infographic. You’ll learn:


  • What Snack Pak 4 Kids is

  • Our two keys to success

  • How to start your own

  • And more!

 

    DOWNLOAD THE SP4K INFOGRAPHIC    

Topics: Insider, Hunger, Community, Stories