Hunger Facts

Hunger is a devastating, pervasive problem which has plagued our area for decades. Hunger strikes the young and the old, the working and the unemployed, college graduates and high school dropouts.  The South Georgia statistics regarding food insecurity and hunger are staggering.   Food insecurity is defined as lack of consistent access to adequate food due to a lack of money and other resources for a period of time,

  • 1 in 3 children in South Georgia live in homes where having enough food is a struggle every day.  That’s over 56,000 kids in our community who may to go to bed hungry tonight.*
  • 1 in 4 people (all ages) in South Georgia don’t know where they will get their next meal.  Termed “food insecurity”, this inability to access affordable, nutritious food conveniently is a daily struggle for more than 160,000 citizens in our area.*
  • The 30 county service area for Second Harvest of South Georgia has the highest rates in the state and among the highest rates in the nation of poverty and food insecurity.**
  • 93% of our service area is ranked as being in high poverty in the last 6 years, while 56% are ranked as being in pervasive poverty from 1980-2011.+

The Cost of Hunger

Hunger is a health problem, an educational problem, and an economic problem.  While most of us will not feel the physical effects of hunger each day, it is suffering for which we all pay.  The effects of hunger and lack of adequate nutrition are both immediate and long-lasting,  plaguing the body, childhood development, and our regional economy.

  • Childhood hunger costs each US citizen $542 annually based on the impact of educational delays, lost income over time, absenteeism, and health problems.++
  • Childhood hunger costs the people of South Georgia more than $400 million per year.++

 

*Feeding America’s Map the Meal Gap Study
** Feeding America’s Map the Meal Gap Study and US Census
+ USDA’s Economic Research Services Atlas of Rural America
++ Center for American Progress’ Hunger in America report (2010)