What is #HCWvsHunger?

#HCWvsHunger is short for Health Care Workers versus Hunger. It is the social media hashtag for a yearly friendly competition between health care workers that started in December 2020 to help relieve food insecurity during the pandemic. Read more about the history of #HCWvsHunger on our “About Us” page.

How do I donate?

Identify a local, national, or international food bank or hunger organization of your choice. Donate whatever you can afford. Screenshot your receipt. That’s it. Simple. If you want to identify a food bank in your area, Feeding America has a helpful food bank locator.

How do I let you know that I have donated?

There are a few ways you can let us know. The simplest way is to go here after you make your donation to notify us and select the team on whose behalf you are donating. This will ensure that your donation is accurately counted and applied to the correct team, and it will also update on the leaderboard more rapidly. If you do not have a Google account or would prefer not to fill out the brief Google Form, you can tweet using your team’s hashtag, #HCWvsHunger, your donation amount, and your receipt.

So how is this different than just donating to a food bank on my own?

The online #HCWvsHunger contest is meant to spur healthy competition between teams organized by health care workers with a goal of maximizing contributions to food banks. When you screenshot your receipt and share it, you choose which team you’d like your food bank donation to count for.

Do I have to be a health care worker to donate on behalf of a #HCWvsHunger team?

Nope. The contest was started by health care workers, but anyone who is motivated to help us relieve human hunger is welcome to start a team.

Do I have to be a health care worker to start a team?

Nope. Same as above.

How do I join a team or choose which team to donate on behalf of?

Many of our teams are organized by medical subspecialty or type of health care worker. For example, in our 2020 #HCWvsHunger contest, we had teams of medical students, nurses, pharmacists, oncologists, surgeons, pediatricians, and more. If you are a health care worker, you might choose to donate on behalf of a team that aligns with your role in health care or your specialty. If you aren’t a health care worker, you might choose to donate on behalf of a team that has been important to your own medical care. For example, cancer survivors might choose to donate to an oncology team, or someone who recently had a baby might choose to donate to a team of obstetricians or pediatricians. You can also just choose to donate to a team whose name you like. Some of them are pretty amusing. It’s totally up to you. We just want to relieve human hunger and have fun encouraging others to join us.

What if I can’t choose a team?

You can still report your contribution to the contest without choosing a team. Just choose the undesignated option on the Google Form. Your donation will still be counted in the #HCWvsHunger overall tally.

How do I create my own team?

If you want to create your own team, you must complete this Google Form. You will need to provide your team name, the name of a team captain, and a brief description of your team to be included on the website. You do not need to make a Twitter account for your team.

How do you choose the food banks?

We don’t. Donors are free to donate to any food bank they wish. Some people donate to food banks where they live, where they grew up, where they vacation, or in another needy area as a way of giving back to their communities. Others choose to donate to more centralized organizations fighting hunger. The Feeding America website has resources to identify places to donate: http://www.feedingamerica.org.

Does any of the money I donate go to #HCWvsHunger itself?

Nope. None of the money you donate goes to #HCWvsHunger. In fact, none of the money you donate ever passes through #HCWvsHunger’s hands. This is a social-media based campaign, not an organization, and everyone involved is an unpaid volunteer.

What are the dates of the contest?

It starts on December 13, 2021 at 12:00 a.m. EST, and ends December 19, 2021 at 6:00 p.m. EST.

Do I need to submit a receipt as proof of donation? If so, where do I send it?

We would prefer that you submit a receipt as proof of donation to help us ensure that the contest is fair and the results are accurate. Donations <$500 do not require a receipt but you may tweet a receipt @HCWvsHunger if you would like. Take a screenshot of your receipt and upload that with your Google form here when you report your donation.

I forgot to screenshot my receipt. Can I still submit my donation on behalf of a team ?

Yes! Most food banks and hunger organizations will email you a receipt. Please screenshot that if you have it. If you still don’t have your receipt, you can still complete the Google form reporting the amount. We trust you.

Does the submitted receipt need to show my credit card information or address?

No. Most food banks and hunger charities will already mask your credit card number in part or in full on the receipt. You are welcome to omit or mask any personal information you wish when submitting the receipt. We would encourage you to mask any financial information or leave it out of your screenshot.

Are teams allowed to merge (and when)? How do I merge my team with another team?

In the 2020 contest, some teams found it fun to merge towards the end to try to move up on the team leaderboard. We are in full support of healthy competition in the fight to relieve hunger! Because our system for keeping track of team scores and updating the leaderboard depends upon having the correct teams listed, we will allow team mergers until 6:00 pm EST on Saturday December 18, 2021. To merge two or more teams, the team captains of all involved teams must notify us of your intention to merge in a group email or DM, indicate the new team name, and wait to receive acknowledgement from HCWvsHunger@gmail.com or the @HCWvsHunger Twitter account with an updated listing on the Google form before you publicly announce your merged team. This is necessary to ensure that no donation records get lost in the merger process and that donors are able to locate the merged team when they wish to contribute.

What does the winning team get?

The winning team will receive a year of bragging rights and a crystal apple engraved with #HCWvsHunger, the competition year, and your team name that is appropriate for display. Because it requires time to personalize, it will be delivered by mail to the team leader listed on the Google form within 4 weeks of the end of the contest. More importantly, all of the teams will win the sense of deep gratitude that accompanies helping someone who will likely never be able to repay you.

I saw this after the contest was over. Can I still donate?

By all means, please do! Though we hope you will donate during the official #HCWvsHunger contest because it’s great to compete for a good cause during the holiday season, food insecurity affects billions of people worldwide year-round. We will stop formally tabulating donations made on behalf of teams when the contest ends on December 19, 2021 at 6:00 EST, but your generosity will continue to count where it matters most.

Will you do this again next year? What are the dates?

Yes! We plan to do the #HCWvsHunger contest every year. Though the precise dates for 2022 have not yet been chosen, the contest will likely be mid-December each year.

I donated to a food bank recently. Does that count for the 2021 contest?

Unfortunately, the December 13th-19th time frame is the only time in which donations will count in the #HCWvsHunger 2021 contest. However, feel happy that you contributed to an important cause!

How can I help out with #HCWvsHunger next year?

If you’re interested in helping us, please fill out this Google Form.