Out to Trash

moneytrashAn often-cited study by the University of Arizona reveals that the average person in the U.S. tosses out about $600 worth of food each year. That’s about $12 each week.

How much is that? Well, with $12 you could buy four pounds of organic, dried chick peas and three pounds of organic, brown, long-grain rice at the Kingston Natural Foods Buying Club. Cooked, this would be enough food to serve two adults one meal each day for one week. Just add salt and pepper to taste.

One way to insure you’re not wasting food is to make a shopping list (with more accurate portion sizes) and stick to it. Buying smaller quantities of local foods when available is also more efficient. You could also invite friends over once a week for a meal to help “empty the fridge.”

Better yet, since you likely haven’t noticed that $12 each week, how about work to not waste food while also giving $12 a week to a local food pantry?

— Arthur Zaczkiewicz

Time to Help Out

helping_handsAs this Kingston Daily Freeman article says, the recession is taking a big toll on the arts community — many of whom work as non-profits.

At issue is a double whammy on the revenue-generating ability of non-profits: consumers are tapped out and not spending as much on the arts while the larger foundations — stressed by a steep erosion in the stock market — have less money to give.

At a recent bring-your-own lunch meeting with several non-profits in the environmental conservation sector, the topic of fundraising is a sensitive topic. There’s simply less of it. And by some forecasts, the percentage of non-profits in the U.S. that are expected to fail in the next two years is 20 percent. This includes non-profits that serve in the environmental conservation, arts, health services and social service sectors.

What can you do? Whatever you can. A little bit can go a long way. And it doesn’t have to be giving money. Give your time. Lend a hand.

— Arthur Zaczkiewicz