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Our Story

#HashtagLunchbag is the perfect example of how a small group of people on a local level can make a tremendous impact, one small act at a time. Learn about how we got started and the things that continue to keep us moving.

Our Beginning

#HashtagLunchbag began on Christmas 2012 in a Los Angeles apartment by a group of friends who were having trouble finding a fun & meaningful way to give back. After a few failed attempts, we decided to take it upon ourselves and create our own experience. We went to our local grocery store and bought enough food to prepare 100 lunches (the kind your mom made you in grade school that made the other kids jealous). We sang and danced. We cracked jokes. We took breaks to watch funny Youtube videos. We connected with each other on a different level, while having the time of our lives! We hit the streets near the Santa Monica Pier and Venice Boardwalk looking for anyone that could use a meal. We smiled when asking people if they were hungry. We exchanged pleasantries while handing over our creations. We acknowledged their humanity, as well as our own. When we were done, we felt awesome and wanted to share with our friends! So we did. We shared on each of our social media platforms, jokingly tagging our posts with #HashtagLunchbag as an ode to hashtags.... plus it rhymed with what we were distributing (simple enough, right?).

We didn't originally intend to repeat our efforts but shortly after sharing, we received an abnormally large amount of likes/comments/calls/texts/emails from people telling us how amazing this looked & wanting to join us for "the next one." Riding the high of our good deeds, we decided to repeat our efforts a month later in January 2013. More of our friends joined, more meals were made, and more people were fed. Once again, we felt awesome and once again, we shared. The ripple continued and more people were hitting us up wanting to know how they could get involved. We ran it back for another go 'round in February 2013, growing out of our apartment to a local restaurant. We set a goal of making 1,000 meals. 100 hundred people showed up for the party. We added love notes of encouragement to each meal to further acknowledge those we were feeding, reminding them that they weren't forgotten. Just like we did, everyone went on to share their experiences on their social platforms, intriguing and inspiring their friends and their followers.

The ripple continued and ever since, we've hosted #HashtagLunchbag events at least once a month in Los Angeles. Through our committed efforts, we began to see others, friends and strangers alike, replicate our model. We shared our story with anyone interested and empowered many to bring our movement to their local community with simple do-it-yourself instructions. To date, our movement has grown to 100+ cities hosting #HashtagLunchbag events around the globe! We never thought that our small actions one Christmas morning would have gone global, inspiring others to spread love, one lunch bag at a time.

Our rapid growth led to the formation of the Living Through Giving Foundation, a registered 501(c)3 non profit organization that empowers humanity with the tools to create & benefit from organized acts of Love.

Our Values

#HashtagLunchbag has become more than just a program that feeds the hungry in local communities. With handwritten love notes as our secret ingredient, we use bagged lunches as vessels to spread love, acknowledging the humanity of both the giver and the receiver.
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Heart LogoPresent

We present an A-Z experience for our volunteers to contribute their time to something fun & meaningful, while connecting with friends, both old & new, and immediately seeing the fruits of their labor.
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Heart LogoFeel

Giving feels good, both for the giver and the receiver. Simply witnessing a random act of kindness uplifts the spirits of all parties involved. We are incrementally relentless in renewing these feelings with each and every meal we provide.
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Heart LogoFeed

We are feeding a different kind of hunger. By providing a nourishing meal + love note to a person in need, not only are we feeding them, we are feeding ourselves. Feeding our souls. Feeding the humanity inside each and every one of us.
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Heart LogoInspire

By sharing our good deeds, both online & offline, we have the power to inspire others to join us in experiencing what we get when we give, sending an exponential ripple throughout the universe.

Feed & Feel Love™

A few months after we started #HashtagLunchbag, we realized that our efforts weren't revolutionary by any means. We were becoming known as a "feed the homeless" program (which made complete sense), but we knew we were much more than that. We would often question whether our efforts were really putting a dent in the bigger issues of hunger & homelessness. At the same time, we were seeing rapid expansion to other major cities, with people becoming addicted to what we created. We couldn't help but ask ourselves "Why?"

It then occurred to us that the meals we were creating were secondary to what we were really doing: presenting our friends with an opportunity to get out of their daily routine; an opportunity to snap out of their individual circumstances, even if just for a moment; an opportunity to do something for someone that couldn't provide them with anything tangible in return.

In doing so, we had an 'aha' moment and came to this conclusion: By Feeding others with meals prepared with Love, we were Feeling Love ourselves! Whether providing a meal to a hungry or simply smiling at a stranger on the street, any act, no matter how big or small, makes a difference and is more than enough!

Living Through Giving™

Living Through Giving is the engine that powers what we do. It’s the intention behind every sandwich made and every love note written. A few months after creating #HashtagLunchbag, after watching our friends and followers bring the movement to their city, we quickly learned that our WHY for what we were doing was much more powerful than the WHAT we were actually doing. We feel most alive when we were focusing out of ourselves and want to share this experience with any and everyone. Whether participating in a #HashtagLunchbag, helping an elderly person cross the street, or simply smiling at a stranger, every effort counts towards our greater purpose. However big or small, we do whatever we can with whatever we’ve got.

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