EC New York takes the “Live Below The Line” challenge


1.2 Billion people in the world live in extreme poverty. EC New York decided to take the “Live Below The Line” challenge to spend only $1.50 per day on food and drink for one week! The staff also tries to get sponsors for the challenge, and they donate money to charities that help to end poverty.

Here is an excerpt from Jamey about doing grocery shopping for this challenge:

Tomorrow begins the Live Below The Line challenge.

I took a trip to the Best Yet supermarket in Astoria, Queens. I actually hadn’t been there before, but I was hoping to find some better deals than at Key Food. Here are 4 things I realized from this experience:

4. You have to pick winners and losers in your shopping cart.

There have been times in my life I’ve had to shop carefully, but it’s a new challenge to plan out a week’s worth of meals at $1.50 per day. Simple things like, “Oh, bananas would be nice” – actually didn’t fit into my budget. It’s no longer a question of finding something healthy, or good – it just comes down to what is on sale and what is cheap.

3. You can feel self-conscious at the checkout counter.

As the cashier was scanning my items, I started to feel fear and doubt. What if I couldn’t “afford” these items? What if I have to take something out because it’s not in my budget? These are awkward situations, and a reality for many.

2. Creativity and planning is key.

As I planned the menu, I tried to think of ways certain food items could be utilized in multiple ways to try to keep things moderately interesting. Crushed tomatoes seemed like a worthy investment as they could be utilized in a couple of different dishes I was planning.

1. Circulars are your friend.

I found myself scouring through the circular, seeing if I could get a deal. That’s really the way my purchases were possible. Most of the items I bought were on sale.

At the end of the day, I purchased:

1 LB box of store brand Angel Hair pasta

1 28 oz can of Crushed Tomatoes (on sale!)

1 LB bag of rice

1 can of Goya Black beans

1 Loaf of whole wheat bread (on sale, score!)

1 jar of Peter Pan Crunchy Peanut butter (on sale too!)

Wish me luck!


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