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Thursday, August 18, 2011

Share Our Strength and Food Network Say: 'You've Been Chopped!' To Childhood Hunger in America

Pin It Share Our Strength and Food Network Say: 'You've Been Chopped!' To Childhood Hunger in America

'Chopped Champions' Marc Murphy serves as official spokesperson for Share Our Strength's Dine Out For No Kid Hungry™ Fundraising Program held September 18-24, 2011.

He may be known for creating delectable culinary dishes in his multiple New York City kitchens, but now Marc Murphy, Executive Chef and Owner of the Benchmarc Restaurants and judge on Food Network's "Chopped Champions," is hoping to put childhood hunger in America on the chopping block. Together with Food Network and hunger-relief organization Share Our Strength®, Murphy will encourage everyone to dine out at one of thousands of restaurants across the country participating in Share Our Strength's Dine Out For No Kid Hungry, a national fundraising program held the week of September 18-24.

Food Network has worked with Share Our Strength over the past several years to raise awareness of childhood hunger in America, while offering its audience actionable ways to help. For Share Our Strength's Dine Out For No Kid Hungry fundraising program, Murphy and several other Food Network personalities from "Chopped Champions" are lending considerable culinary clout to national print and broadcast public service announcements (PSA's) that encourage viewers to eat at participating restaurants the week of September 18-24. In addition, Food Network will promote the fundraising program on-air during season three of "Chopped Champions," airing August 30th through September 27th.

Murphy's own NYC restaurants - Landmarc at the Time Warner Center, Ditch Plains Upper West Side, Ditch Plains West Village and Landmarc Tribeca - will also be raising funds for Dine Out For No Kid Hungry.

"Ending childhood hunger in America by 2015 is something everyone can contribute to," says Murphy. "As a culinary professional and, more importantly, as a father, ensuring that our children can take advantage of community programs and healthy eating education is crucial. If you typically eat out, you can help end childhood hunger by simply dining out at any of the more than 4,000 restaurants participating in this amazing campaign."

Funds raised through Dine Out For No Kid Hungry support Share Our Strength's No Kid Hungry® Campaign, to end childhood hunger in America.

Specific efforts include ensuring that children in need are enrolled in federal nutrition programs like school lunch and breakfast; investing in community organizations that help connect kids with the food they need; teaching at-risk families how to cook healthy, affordable meals; and building public-private partnerships to end child hunger at the state and city levels. Last year, restaurants raised more than $1.5 million through Dine Out For No Kid Hungry - a number they hope to double this year.

"U.S. Department of Agriculture statistics show that nearly one in four children in this country are at risk of hunger. They just can't count on getting the food they need," said Debbie Shore, co-founder of Share Our Strength. "We're incredibly proud to have Food Network partner with us in our fight to end childhood hunger. The influence, compassion and enthusiasm of Chef Marc Murphy will be invaluable in communicating how simple it is for anyone, anywhere to join our fight against hunger."

Now in its fourth year, Dine Out For No Kid Hungry leverages America's love affair with chefs and restaurants, the desire to give back to those in need and the yearning to patronize businesses that are doing the same. More than 4,000 participating restaurants, including independently run locations such as Murphy's Benchmarc Restaurants and chain brands such as Boston Market, P.F. Chang's, O'Charley's, raise funds in a variety of ways, from donating a percentage of sales, to hosting customer promotions and merchandizing opportunities.

Share Our Strength's Dine Out For No Kid Hungry is nationally sponsored by Sysco, American Express, Ecolab, Open Table, Food Network, USA Today, and the National Restaurant Association.

For more information, or to find participating restaurants, visit http://www.strength.org/.

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