Food Insecurity

“Food insecurity is defined by the United States Department of Agriculture as the lack of access, at times, to enough food for an active, healthy life. Food insecurity is associated with numerous adverse social and health outcomes and is increasingly considered a critical public health issue. Key drivers of food insecurity include unemployment, poverty, and income shocks, which can prevent adequate access to food. Alternatively, multiple interventions have been shown to reduce food insecurity, including participation in food assistance programs and broader societal-level improvements in economic stability.”

 – Feeding America

Nearly 13% of American families struggle with food insecurity on a consistent basis. In West Virginia, one in nine people face hunger and 50,680 are children. Absence of nutritional foods not only affects physical health but is often linked to anxiety and depression in both children and adults. Many children depend on free school feeding programs for nutrition and are vulnerable on weekends and in summer months, while older adults may have to choose between food and needed medications.

The Pallottine Foundation of Huntington partners with organizations in the healthcare and food access sectors to ensure healthy foods are available to those in need. In addition, the Foundation supports a variety of innovative approaches that go beyond mitigating food insecurity and seek to transform food systems and bolster connections between food and health.

Food insecurity support may include, but is not limited to:

  • Children’s after-school, weekend, and summer feeding programs
  • Development of healthy, sustainable community gardens
  • Food box distributions and community meal programs
  • Food items for food banks, pantries, and meal programs
  • Medically indicated food boxes
  • Nutrition and chronic disease education programs
  • Strengthening food bank and food pantry networks

Learn more about food insecurity grants on our Core Priorities Funding and Healthy Communities Initiative pages.