When considering what might or might not be appropriate to offer to the people we serve, it is important to keep in that food is much more than just its nutritional label, a truth perfectly illustrated by this story that came to us from the Food Bank in Spokane, Washington, as told by then-Director Al Brislain:
We were interviewing clients in Spokane at a monthly supplemental distribution program we operated. We asked one woman a question about the benefit of receiving the food. She started talking about how her son’s grades had improved dramatically since they had started receiving the food. The immediate assumption of the interviewer was that the improvement was because the boy was now receiving good nutrition, etc.
The mother said, ‘No,’ that it was because of the snack food they had received. After seeing the perplexed look on the interviewer’s face, she explained: for years her son had been ashamed to invite his friends over to study with him because there were no snacks in the house because they couldn’t afford them. Now the son invited friends over to study regularly, causing the improvement in his grades.