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Food

Heartfelt Photographs Of Hope And Hunger

The solution to hunger starts with us. A selection of images submitted to National Geographic from its photo community, Your Shot.

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This month, National Geographic is asking their readers to submit photos that depict hunger and hope via its online photo-sharing platform, Your Shot, until Nov. 30. At the end of the submission period, a panel of editors including National Geographic photographer Annie Griffiths and acclaimed chef Mario Batali will handpick their favorites for an online story. Here are a handful of submitted images along with some of Griffiths' taken while on assignment with Feeding America:

Annie Griffiths/National Geographic Creative

"In Firebaugh, California, needy families arrive in the middle of the night to wait in line for food distribution the next day. Many sleep in their cars after placing carts and boxes out as placeholders. Drought conditions have led to job loss and food insecurity in this, one of America's most important agricultural regions."

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Annie Griffiths/National Geographic Creative

"Baby Marietta shares an apple with her mother after picking up fresh groceries from a food delivery site. Her young parents share a chilly trailer in rural Tennessee with their three children. Her mother cried when she spoke about how much the food they receive helps them survive."

Annie Griffiths/National Geographic Creative

"Ignacio has been volunteering at the mobile pantry in Sanger for over 20 years. Although he is battling prostate cancer, he is still full of energy. He prepares the food for the distribution, checking the quality of the produce and marking the boxes with the quantity each person will be able to take home to make sure the 300 people that will stand in line will receive a good amount of everything available. Among the produce are a dozen bananas and eggs, and 10 pounds of carrots for each person. Ignacio is particularly proud of the strawberries."

Kyle Kurlick /National Geographic Your Shot

"Three young volunteers fill boxes with bread loaves at the Cook Convention Center in Memphis, Tennessee, as part of One Memphis' "Operation Christmas Basket." Hundreds of families enjoyed a full Christmas dinner and needed groceries thanks to hundreds of volunteers who prepared boxes of food in assembly line fashion."

Angela Smirkman /National Geographic Your Shot

"I recently returned from a two-year journey around the world with my husband and our three children during which we spent three months teaching at a tribal school in Kavita, India, where this shot was taken. The most difficult part of our experience was knowing that our students often went hungry and that there was so little we could do. Though we brought baskets of fruit each morning to distribute among the students, each afternoon we left knowing that they might not eat again until tomorrow."

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Annie Griffiths/National Geographic Creative

"In Sneadville, Tennessee, the median annual income for the elderly is $11,000. Food assistance is an enormous help to folks like Grant and Barbara Gibson, who also care for their in-laws."

Jason Weigner /National Geographic Your Shot

"Skagit Gleaners in Mount Vernon, Washington, is a model of solving hunger issues in a community while also reducing waste. Gleaners has agreements with local grocery stores to collect their food that can no longer be sold. The food is collected by Gleaners and redistributed to its members. Members have to agree to volunteer a number of hours a month gathering and sorting the food to gain the right to shop three times a week and gather 20 to 50 lbs of food per trip. Here Noah happily helps unload salvaged food."

Ricardo Palavecino /National Geographic Your Shot

“Here in Los Angeles Fr. Gregory Boyle, best known as Fr. G., created Homeboy Industries... recognized as the largest gang intervention/ re-entry program in the country... Homeboy serves as a beacon of hope and opportunity for those seeking to leave gang life, for whom the barriers and challenges are great, and for whom there is virtually no other avenue to enter the mainstream.”

J. Grinyar /National Geographic Your Shot

"I was a single parent with two children having left a violently abusive ex-husband after 12 years of marriage; the USDA Women, Infant and Children food program gave us our ability to live on our own — we would not be where we are today. This program gave us what you see on this plate and more — it gave us HOPE. Today not only am I an employed college graduate, but both my adult married daughters also — not an impoverished statistic. We are prosperously strong to be able to give back to others :)"

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