Jeff Bridges, National Spokesperson for the No Kid Hungry Campaign

Jeff Bridges is an Academy Award®-winning actor, a musician, a photographer and a philanthropist. For the last 30 years, he has been a leading anti-hunger activist and advocate for children. In 1983, Jeff founded the End Hunger Network, a non-profit organization dedicated to feeding children around the world. In 2010, Jeff joined Share Our Strength as the national spokesperson for the No Kid Hungry campaign to end childhood hunger in America and has been working tirelessly since to increase national awareness on this often hidden issue.

One of Hollywood’s most successful actors and a six-time Academy Award® nominee, Jeff Bridges', performance in “Crazy Heart”—as Bad Blake, the down-on-his-luck, alcoholic country music singer at the center of the drama—deservedly garnered the iconic performer his first Oscar® for Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role. The performance also earned him the Golden Globe, SAG Award and the IFP/Spirit Award for Lead Actor.

He recently wrapped production on “The Giver” directed by Phillip Noyce, opposite Meryl Streep. The film is based on the children’s novel by Lois Lowry, and has been a passion project for Jeff for more than a decade. Jeff serves as a producer on the film, slated for an August 2014 release. Additionally he will be seen in the adventure/fantasy film “Seventh Son” opposite Julianne Moore, Ben Barnes and Kit Harington for director Sergey Bodrov. The film is an adaptation of a series of young adult books about a teen who learns the art of wizardry after discovering that he is the seventh son of a seventh son slated for a February 2015 release

Jeff and his wife Susan divide their time between their home in Santa Barbara, California, and their ranch in Montana.

Jeff Bridges' Recent Appearances

Jeff Bridges travels to Arkansas to highlight the states great progress on breakfast and summer meals

Arkansas welcomed the No Kid Hungry campaign and national spokesperson Jeff Bridges in March 2014, to mark our significant achievements in work to ensure more low income children get free breakfast at school. Bridges joined Governor Beebe, Share Our Strength founder Bill Shore, and corporate and community partners, to witness breakfast after the bell up close.

The simple act of moving breakfast from the cafeteria into the first period classroom has had a significant impact for kids who used to eat alone in the cafeteria or arrived too late for breakfast and often went without. Jeff ate breakfast with first graders at Stevens Elementary School in Little Rock. Later in the day, he had a chance to share his experience with a group of school superintendents from around Arkansas who had not yet adopted breakfast in the classroom and he encouraged them to think about the outcome, rather than the obstacles, to feeding kids in their school districts.

Reaching out to Governors from around the country

In March 2014, Jeff met with a number of governors to discuss childhood hunger in their states. At a meeting of Democratic Governors in Montana, Jeff and Bill Shore were joined in a hunger panel by Governor Steve Bullock (MT), Governor Martin O’Malley (MD), Governor Jay Inslee (Washington), Governor Lincoln Chafee(Rhode Island), Governor John Hickenlooper (Colorado) and Governor Jay Nixon (Missouri). The panel created an opportunity for useful sharing of information; several of the Governors on hand were looking for real life solutions to barriers that exist to moving breakfast from the cafeteria into the classroom and Bridges and Shore were able to give them solid examples of steps to take to implement the innovative program.

The kids at Darby School after their breakfast in the classroom
Billy, Governor Steve Bullock Montana) and Jeff Bridges at the Darby School visiting breakfast in the classroom
First Lady Lisa Bullock, Billy, Governor Steve Bullock and Jeff Bridges at the Darby School visiting breakfast in the classroom

Third graders at The Darby School in Montana gets big cheers

During Jeff’s four day visit to Montana, he ate breakfast with a group of third graders at Darby School with Governor Steve Bullock and First Lady Lisa Bullock. The school chef has found an innovative way to utilize her federal reimbursement dollars for school breakfast by purchasing fresh fruits and vegetables herself and folding them into the nutritional guideline meals. Jeff and Governor Bullock got to sample her delicious egg casserole with potatoes, peppers and tomatoes, a piece of whole wheat toast, a mandarin orange and low fat milk.

Jeff and Governor Bullock serving afternoon snacks to kids at the Billings, MT YMCA as part of their afterschool program.
Jeff leading kids in an exercise dance class at the Billings, MT YMCA as part of their afterschool program.

An innovative way to erase the stigma of receiving free meals in the summertime: music!

With Jeff’s vision and a lot of hard work on the part of the Parks and Recreation Department and other leading non profits in Santa Barbara, Jeff devised a clever way to combat the stigma that is all too often associated with free meals for low income children in America. Music.

They kicked off the summer with a concert featuring Jeff Bridges and three local youth bands from the area. The local community really embraced the combination of message with music so the local FOOD4KIDS collaborative took it one step further and planned a series of small outdoor concerts to promote summer meals sites. The atmosphere was fun, interactive and inclusive and made it easier for parents to bring their children to free summer meal sites without worry about stigma. Music and food for all kids, all summer long and continuing this summer as well.

Photograph by Tiffany Wheeler