Friday, October 28, 2005

Hunting Season Is Here

Well, to be more accurate, deer season has begun.

I am a hunter. I hunt deer, squirrel, dove, turkey, grouse (when I can), pheasant, even frogs. Yes, frogs. If frogs are harvested by gigging a hunting license is required, if harvested by netting or trapping a fishing license is required. Just one of those silly little Game and Inland Fisheries rules.

I want to bring to your attention one of my favorite charities, Hunters for the Hungry. A permanent link can be found on the sidebar of this website.
From their website;
Hunters for the Hungry History

During the summer of 1991 a meeting was held to determine the feasibility of the Hunters for the Hungry concept in Virginia. Involved in this discussion were representatives of the Virginia Department of Game & Inland Fisheries, the Virginia Association of Meat Processors, the Virginia Deer Hunters Association, the Virginia Federation of Foodbanks, other nonprofit food distribution charities, and interested individuals. Information was also available from the Virginia Department of Health and the Virginia Department of Meat and Poultry Inspection.

The outcome of this meeting indicated that venison could be donated, processed, and distributed while complying with all laws and codes applicable in Virginia. It was decided that the program should be administered by a certified 501 (C) (3) organization and that to function best funds should be raised to cover the costs of having professional meat processors(butchers) accept, cut, wrap, and freeze the deer donated by hunters in Virginia. Distribution would be handled through foodbanks and other charities. A nonprofit administrator volunteered to take on the project as a pilot effort and Hunters for the Hungry began in Virginia in the fall of 1991.

During the first year over 33,000 pounds of venison was donated, processed, and distributed. The program expanded and in its second year over 68,000 pounds of meat was handled.

It became clear that the potential of the program was quite large and the decision was made in January of 1993 to form a separate nonprofit corporation to administer and operate the program. This was accomplished and continues to exist. That organization has a corporate title of Virginia Hunters Who Care, Inc.

The Hunters for the Hungry program has continued to expand. Annual distribution now exceeds 300,000 pounds. The potential exists to make three to four times that amount available each year. At this point the availability of finances is the limiting factor.

If you are a deer hunter, consider donating one or more of your kills to this organization, if you are not, consider making a monetary donation to help with the processing fees. Either way, you will be doing a very worthwhile thing.

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