Food Insecurity

Food Insecurity

We always have an awesome time in the Cone Zone with Something to Eat, packing meals, dancing to the music, and having a great experience bringing communities together to help out our fellow neighbor, but we also focus on the important issues facing our world today and one of the big reasons that we do what we do is to help fight something called food insecurity 

What is Food Insecurity?

Food insecurity is “the limited or uncertain availability of nutritionally adequate and safe food.” It is oftentimes associated with hunger but the two are distinct. Hunger is an individual level physiological condition that may result from food insecurity. Put simply, individuals facing food insecurity may not know where their next meal is coming from or they may lack access to healthy and nutritious foods.   

 

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Why is it important?

An estimated 42 million Americans suffer from food insecurity. Of that number, 13 million are children. At a glance that may not seem like much, but those numbers represent families who aren’t getting enough food to eat on a regular basis.  

 1 in 8 Americans suffer from food insecurity 

 1 and 6 children within American households suffer from food insecurity.

USDA estimated Food Security for 2016

  • Food Secure Households
  • Low Food Security Households
  • Low Food Security Households with children

What does it look like?

Food insecurity appears different than what most might imagine, and it’s a complex problem that does not appear in isolation, oftentimes intertwined with issues like affordable housing, healthcare, and lower wages. A family suffering from food insecurity lacks the means to meet all the basic needs of everyday life and may be struggling to stay afloat, but it isn’t always immediately apparent at a glance. For instance, sufferers can be above or below the poverty line and there are a number of factors that can cause insecurity such as the sudden loss of a family member or caring for a sick child. Because of this, food insecurity can oftentimes be a silent struggle, leaving many to suffer in isolation or embarrassment.

 

Who does it affect the most?

Children

Children facing food insecurity are more likely to have health problems such as anemia and asthma and are more likely to struggle in school. 

Elderly

Rising housing and health care costs mean that many seniors must face food insecurity as they rely on fixed incomes or social security to make ends meet. In addition, some seniors lack the mobility to travel or live alone, unable to receive assistance with their food needs.   

Rural Communities

Rural communities often experience food insecurity at higher rates due to the lack of available resources in more remote areas. The closest food pantry may be hours away in some places. This, combined with the potential for very little employment opportunities in low wage industries means that rural communities are left to fend for themselves.  

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What can you do?

Join the fight to end food insecurity! There are a number of different ways you can help out. Host a Cone Zone party and bring your community together to join the cause. You can also donate your time by volunteering or help fund the fight. Every little bit helps and all efforts are greatly appreciated.