Derrick Westscott lost his job a while back and then he had to face losing his apartment. He was denied Medicare and ineligible for food stamps. Unfortunately, Westcott shares the story of millions of American’s who’ve had it more than rough in a tough economy, a dismal job market and decreased funding for government programs. Like Westscott, people and families are for the first time relying on food banks and soup kitchens to survive.
Hunger in America is a harsh reality with one in six children not having enough food to eat. One in eight Americans (or 37 million) uses a food bank to fill in the holes where welfare programs have left gaps. In a 2011 study, Feeding America found that African American households are disproportionately represented within the emergency food assistance client population. African American children are also nearly three times as likely to receive emergency food assistance as their Caucasian peers. Overall, the poverty rates for African Americans are nearly triple that of non-Hispanic whites.
In light of these statistics, hunger has no color, race or religion, just an empty stomach looking for relief. Fight the odds by becoming an asset to your community by donating to your local food bank. You can find a food bank in your area by visit FoodPantries.org. When you can’t give time or you’re unable to split your grocery shopping, you can also make a one-time or monthly donation online at FeedingAmerica.org.
Here are five reasons why donating to your local food bank should be high on your priority to-do list: