The New Face of Hunger– National Geographic

By Tracie McNew Face of HungerMillan

Millions of working Americans don’t know where their next meal is coming from. We sent three photographers to explore hunger in three very different parts of the United States, each giving different faces to the same statistic: One-sixth of Americans don’t have enough food to eat.

On a gold-gray morning in Mitchell County, Iowa, Christina Dreier sends her son, Keagan, to school without breakfast. He is three years old, barrel-chested, and stubborn, and usually refuses to eat the free meal he qualifies for at preschool. Faced with a dwindling pantry, Dreier has decided to try some tough love: If she sends Keagan to school hungry, maybe he’ll eat the free breakfast, which will leave more food at home for lunch.

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Helping Fill the Summer Meal Gap

Food banks and hunger-relief organizations are critical to the safety net for people, and especially children, who are affected by food insecurity.

By Hyun Namkoong       June 30, 2014

On a hot summer evening in June, a group of children waited in the parking lot of a low-income community in Holly Springs to sign up for hot meals and one-on-one reading assistance from the Inter-Faith Food Shuttle and Read and Feed.

Bright-orange cones sectioned off a safe area for kids to gather and eat beef stroganoff, honey dew melon and salad from the IFFS Mobile Tastiness Machine, and to take home classic children’s books such as Where the Wild Things Are from Read and Feed’s bookmobile.

A volunteer from InterFaith Food Shuttle shows off the day’s offering of beef stroganoff, salad and melon
Terri Hutter, food service chief from Inter-Faith Food Shuttle shows off the day’s offering of beef stroganoff, salad and melon. Photo credit: Hyun Namkoong
The Mobile Tastiness Machine is a colorfully painted food truck that makes daily rounds, Monday to Friday, delivering lunch and dinner to locations in Wake and Durham counties.

The Read and Feed’s big and, thankfully, air-conditioned bookmobile houses a small library and desks and chairs for the children and volunteers, many of whom are school teachers who help the kids maintain their reading levels during the summer holidays.


Governor McCrory Proclaims “Stop Summer Hunger Month”

Two-little-girlsWHEREAS, North Carolina’s traditional school calendars end in the month of June and the majority of food-insecure, school-age children who receive free and reduced lunch are not guaranteed breakfast and lunch during their summer break; and

WHEREAS, of the 671,000 low-income children in North Carolina who receive lunch assistance during the school year, only 98,000 will be able to participate in feeding programs this summer; and

WHEREAS, the State of North Carolina is committed to working with NC ASSOCIATION of FEEDING AMERICA FOOD BANKS, and the citizens of North Carolina, to educate about the critical need to support the State’s food banks in their efforts to address hunger and raise awareness of the need to devote more resources and attention to changing the rules regarding summer programs for school-age children;

NOW, THEREFORE,I, PAT McCRORY, Governor of the State of North Carolina, do hereby proclaim June 2014, as “STOP SUMMER HUNGER MONTH” in North Carolina, and commend its observance to all citizens.
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Child Nutrition a Year-Round Need in N.C.

By Alan Briggs, Executive Director, NC Association of Feeding America Food Banks

There has been a lot of attention the last few years to the food we are serving our children in school. We passionately debate things like whole grains and sodium content or the availability of fresh fruits and vegetables.

We also appreciate the attention that our food banks receive for our popular BackPack programs. There is wide support for this effort to send a backpack of food home with needy children on Fridays to help them eat through the weekend.

What is sadly and strangely missing from that conversation is a discussion of what we are feeding children over the summer, and unfortunately the answer is not much.

Over 671,000 low-income children in North Carolina receive lunch assistance during the school year, but just 98,000 will be able to participate in feeding programs this summer. Research has found that children consume up to 50 percent of their total daily calories at school during the school year. What happens to children whose families don’t have the resources to make up that 50 percent on a summer day?

North Carolina’s Feeding America Food Banks and other charities do their part to try to close the summer hunger gap by operating summer feeding programs throughout our state. But there is currently no way we will be able to reach the 85 percent of kids not being served without greater flexibility in the ways and places we are allowed to reach them.

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Great American Milk driveThe Great American Milk Drive is a national campaign by Feeding America to secure highly desired gallons of nutrient-rich milk for millions of hungry families—made possible by the nation’s milk companies and dairy farmers. Feeding America is the nation’s largest domestic hunger-relief organization with a network of more than 200 food banks and 61,000 agencies.

Milk is one of the items most requested by food bank clients, yet there is a nationwide shortage because it is rarely donated. That will soon change, thanks to The Great American Milk Drive , the first-ever national program to help deliver highly desired and nutrient-rich gallons of milk to hungry families who need it most.


Inter-Faith Food Shuttle teams with Growing Power for urban agriculture workshop

sbarr@newsobserver.comMay 6, 2014

RALEIGH — The crowd gathered on Inter-Faith Food Shuttle’s urban farm Saturday didn’t shy away when pungent blue barrels of old broccoli, oranges and greens were deposited before them.

In fact, they took one step closer.

The dozens of grow-your-own enthusiasts scribbled in notebooks and snapped photos as urban agriculture expert Will Allen shared his tips for composting on the farm at the corner of Hoke Street and Garner Road in Southeast Raleigh.



Hunger is a ‘silent crisis’ in the USA

Merisol Bello USA Today, April 16, 2014

Map the Meal Gap USA TodayTianna Gaines Turner can’t remember the last time she went to bed without worrying about how she was going to feed her three children. She can’t remember the last time she woke up and wasn’t worried about how she and her husband would make enough in their part-time jobs to buy groceries and pay utilities on their apartment in a working-class section of Philadelphia. And she can’t remember the last time she felt confident she and her husband wouldn’t have to skip meals so their children could eat. Twenty-eight hundred miles away in a middle-class section of Van Nuys, Calif., similar worries press on Nikki Maxwell and her husband. The two lost their jobs during the recession and now work part time making half their former income. They face a daily struggle to feed their three children, Maxwell says. She remembers the first time she had to turn to a food pantry for help because she had no other options.”I remember feeling really hopeless,” Maxwell says. “I was depressed. I didn’t know what to do. I was drowning under the weight of it.” Read more at:

NC Colleges and Universities Add Student Food Pantries

College pantry











JAY PRICE         jprice@newsobserver.comMarch 26, 2014

RALEIGH — North Carolina is part of a national boom of new food pantries that are sprouting in a surprising location: college campuses.

The latest opened at N.C. Central University in Durham on Tuesday, joining others at N.C. State University, Meredith College, Durham Technical Community College and at least four other North Carolina schools. Nearly all the pantries are less than 18 months old, and plans for one on the UNC-Chapel Hill campus are in discussion.

“Every time you turn around, another one is popping up,” said Sally Parlier, the volunteer services coordinator at Durham Tech, who works with the pantry there and advised NCCU on how to start and run its own.

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Legal Feeding Frenzy Off To Rousing Start

By Russell Rawlings March 7, 2014

Feeding frenzy pix 2014Volunteers, special guests and representatives of the Second Harvest Food Bank of Northwest NC in Winston-Salem joined Attorney General Roy Cooper on Thursday, March 6, to formally launch the 2014 North Carolina Legal Feeding Frenzy.

“I am excited about our office sponsoring this,” said Cooper, who is serving as honorary chair of the statewide food drive for the second year. “We will be with you every step of the way. Let’s help the people who need it the most.

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U.S. Lets 141 Trillion Calories Of Food Go To Waste Each Year

Calorie Wasteby ELIZA BARCLAY    

The sheer volume of food wasted in the U.S. each year should cause us some shame, given how many people are hungry both in our own backyard and abroad.

Now the U.S. Department of Agriculture has provided us with a way to understand our flagrant annual waste in terms of calories, too. It’s pretty mind-boggling — 141 trillion calories down the drain, so to speak, or 1,249 calories per capita per day.

And if we could actually reduce this staggering quantity of food waste, the price of food worldwide might go down, according to a report from researchers at USDA’s Economic Research Service, Jean Buzby, Hodan Wells and Jeffrey Hyman.