Food Insecurity (or Food Uncertainty) and How Feeding Inc. Is Helping
It is easy to sometimes think that nothing is changing when it comes to the constant need that comes in through the gate here at Feeding Inc. It is easy to get discouraged when the numbers of people served increase rather than decrease. It is sometimes hard to see how lives are being changed when in the midst of the hustle and bustle of feeding hungry, sometimes difficult and always needy people. So when the 2016 edition of the Missouri Hunger Atlascame out, it was very encouraging to see that the percentiles had changed! In 2013, the state average of people living in food insecurity was 13.9% and the amount of Jasper County residents that were living in food insecurity was 17.7% which is considered very high. Now in 2016, the state average has sadly risen to 16.4% of people in food insecurity but the amount of Jasper County residents in food insecurity has fallen to 15.8% which is average! That is a 1.9% drop in people that don’t know where their next meal is coming from! Feeding Inc. is glad to be a part of that change! Also, lives are being changed through equipping classes, helping people to break free from hopelessness, teaching them how to make small steps to health and wealth. Come by on a Wednesday and see the smiles starting to form on the faces of the hungry as they are empowered to become what they are destined to be. It takes a village, they say, and Feeding Inc. works with the other agencies in Carthage to fight hunger and poverty together, keeping track of client records on Charity Tracker to prevent misuse of resources. That 1.9% may seem like a small amount, but that 1.9% are people whose lives have been changed for the better! Every life counts and changed lives change communities! Find out how you can help change lives to impact a region!
We are always looking for volunteers, both during food distributions times and at other times to help clean and organize. Without the food drives that local groups run, we would sometimes struggle to provide extra food for our clients. The same people who volunteer and run food drives often make the effort to raise awareness of our food pantry and other local organizations like the Crisis Center and Crosslines. This is so important because it not only helps more people in need find us, but it also helps more donors find us.
Clipping coupons can help poor families buy more groceries with their money, but donating coupons to those in need can be helpful as well. Often they cannot afford to buy the newspapers that carry the coupons, so donations of coupons is a blessing. We can take coupons at our food pantry and make them available for those who wish to use them.
And oh how we would LOVE to have a community garden! We do not have space at our facility, though, so someone would have to sponsor it and probably many people would have to maintain it. Even just a handful of gardeners adding a few extra feet of vegetables to their home gardens and donating the bounty to us would be an amazing help!