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Hatch hopes event will feed U.S. families

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Today is not just any Thursday. For the fourth year in a row, Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, persuaded the Senate to declare the Thursday before Thanksgiving as "Feed America Day."

Hatch's resolution encourages all Americans to sacrifice two meals and donate the money they would have spent to a charity to help feed the hungry.

"Most of us can and must do more to help those in need," Hatch said. "Many of us have friends and neighbors who are hurting, or we know about others who are in dire circumstances. We must step up to meet their basic needs and help them get back on their feet."

Cathy Caputo Hoskins, executive director of the Salt Lake Community Action Program, said such help is especially needed during the current tough economic times.

"The demand for food boxes has increased by 40 percent over the past year," she said. "Most of the applicants we are seeing are coming to us for the first time. They are families or individuals who were self-sufficient before the economic turmoil hit. Sadly, our cupboards are not filled adequately to keep up with the demand."

— Lee Davidson