According to a new government report, the number of Americans who lack adequate, consistent access to food rose to a new high of 49 million last year. Especially discouraging is the number of children who live in households with low food security, which rose from 12 million to 17 million in just over a year.
The report gives a stark look at how the economy has impacted American families, despite news over the last months that consumer confidence is improving. President Obama promised during his campaign to eliminate childhood hunger in America by 2015.
As the report indicates, poverty and food insecurity don't necessarily go hand-in-hand. Many of the families who run out of food before they can afford to buy more earn above the poverty level.
Despite the bad news, organizations are promoting new images to help.
The Food Bank For New York City has initiated a new Adopt A Food Program, which pairs long-term volunteers with food banks and pantries where their skills will be best utilized.
Through the Adopt A Food Program, volunteers enter into three, six, or twelve-month commitments, and do more than just hand out food. Volunteers with special skills can host fundraising events, do grant writing, conduct outreach for programs, or even teach classes on computer literacy.