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22% OF CHILDREN LIVE AT RISK OF HUNGER

 

Contact:Carrie Fulbright
Gleaners Food Bank of Indiana
3737 Waldemere Ave
Indianapolis, IN 46241
cfulbright@gleaners.org
(317) 925-0191 ext. 104




NEW STUDY SHOWS THAT 22% OF CHILDREN
 LIVE AT RISK OF HUNGER
IN GLEANERS FOOD BANK’S SERVICE AREA


Map the Meal Gap Child Food Insecurity 2011: Data at the Local Level for the First Time
Indianapolis – Aug. 25, 2011 – Gleaners Food Bank of Indiana, Inc. and Feeding America, the nation’s largest hunger relief organization, today released a new study which reveals in 22% of children under the age of 18 are struggling with hunger.

The study, “Map the Meal Gap: Child Food Insecurity 2011”, also reveals that there are children struggling with hunger in every county in America. Nationally, while one in six Americans overall are food insecure, the rate for children is much higher: nearly one in four children are food insecure.

Cindy Hubert, President & CEO of Gleaners Food Bank of Indiana, Inc. stated, “These findings clearly demonstrate the profound need for food assistance for children in our community.  While food insecurity is harmful to any individual, food insecurity is particularly devastating among children due to their increased vulnerability and the potential for long term consequences.  Gleaners will be utilizing this new data to look at service gaps in our area and will work diligently, along with our community partners, to make sure the children in those areas get fed.”

“Hunger is too often a hidden issue, but a growing number of people especially children, suffer from it,” said Congressman André Carson. “This study sheds light on the real scope of the problem and the challenges that assisting agencies, like Gleaners, face to achieve the greatest impact with scarce resources.”

“Map the Meal Gap: Child Food Insecurity” provides the following data for each county in Gleaners 21 county service area in an interactive map format:

o The percentage of the Gleaners’ service area population who is food insecure.

o The percentage of children in Gleaners’ service area that is eligible for assistance from federal nutrition programs like Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC), free or reduced-price school meals, and others.

o The percentage of children in Gleaners’ service area that is not eligible for assistance from federal nutrition programs like Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC), free or reduced-price school meals, and others.


An executive summary of the report can be found at: feedingamerica.org/mapthegap/childsummary

The study is an important tool because it provides critical information for developing strategies to alleviate child hunger. The study shows that 22.5% of Marion County’s children are food insecure and that 25% of Shelby County children are food insecure. While Hamilton County has the lowest level of food insecure children, 17.2% of children in that county are still food insecure.

By providing additional details about the face of child food insecurity at the county level, “Map the Meal Gap: Child Food Insecurity 2011” will enable food banks, the community based agencies they serve and policy makers to redefine approaches in addressing needs of hungry children and their families and develop more effective policy solutions.

This research is supported by ConAgra Foods Foundation. The ConAgra Foods Foundation funded this research with the goal of advancing the collective understanding of child hunger in America, so that resources at the local and national level could be better leveraged to help children and families in need. 

The research is based on “Map the Meal Gap 2011: Food Insecurity Estimates at the County Level”, supported by the Howard G. Buffett Foundation and Nielsen.

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About Gleaners Food Bank of Indiana, Inc.

On a yearly basis, over 160,000 food-insecure Hoosiers depend on food and other critical grocery products provided by Gleaners Food Bank of Indiana to hunger relief agencies throughout 21 counties in central and southeastern Indiana. Gleaners was founded in 1980 and is a member of Feeding America the nation’s food bank network.  Since then, the food bank has distributed over 280 million pounds of food and critical grocery products to nearly 400 hunger relief agencies serving needy Hoosiers.  In Gleaners’ 21-county service area, more than 287,000 people live in poverty—and 103,000 of them are children.  For example, eight out of 10 Indianapolis Public School students receive free or reduced lunches. To learn more, log onto www.gleaners.org.

About Feeding America
Feeding America provides low-income individuals and families with the fuel to survive and even thrive. As the nation's leading domestic hunger-relief charity, our network members supply food to more than 37 million Americans each year, including 14 million children and 3 million seniors. Serving the entire United States, more than 200 member food banks support 61,000 agencies that address hunger in all of its forms. For more information on how you can fight hunger in your community and across the country, visit http://www.feedingamerica.org. Find us on Facebook at facebook.com/FeedingAmerica or follow our news on Twitter at twitter.com/FeedingAmerica.