Feeding Clark children should be priority

Published 9:00 am Tuesday, September 12, 2017

According to the 2016 Map the Meal Gap report, 17 percent of Kentucky’s population is food insecure — more than 740,000 people.

The report, released by Feeding America, details food insecurity rates in every county and congressional district in the U.S. Food insecurity is the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s measure of lack of access, at times, to enough food for an active, healthy life for all household members.

The report found that food insecurity exists in every county in Kentucky, meaning Clark County is not immune to this nationwide problem.

Email newsletter signup

The food insecure in Kentucky includes 222,380 children. In fact, children are at a higher risk of food insecurity, the report found — 22 percent of Kentucky’s children are food-insecure.

Even more startling is that nearly 30 percent of the food-insecure households in Kentucky are 185 percent above the poverty line, making them likely ineligible for food nutrition assistance program.

Because of this, it is up to the community to help fill the gap for our neighbors.

There are many local organizations who work together to fight the issue of food insecurity.

One such program is a new on at George Rogers Clark High School.

GRC teacher Brian Foudray and Youth Service Center director John Lennon have partnered to open a food bank at the high school, stocked with both perishable and non-perishable goods.

In  years past, the school has worked  on food drives to gather donations for Clark County Community Services and other organizations throughout the community.

After seeing the high demand CCCS deals with each day, the two decided to look into creating a resource themselves to alleviate needs in the community.

With the help of Tara Cruse, the nurse at Campbell Junior High School, which also operates a food bank, GRC can now offer a program to make sure Clark County’s high school students do not have to go without.

Thankfully, Clark County schools offer two free meals a day. Now, this food bank, and those at the other schools, can help meet the needs for meals outside of school hours or when school is not in session.

In addition to the schools, several local churches, Clark County Community Services, Clark County Homeless Coalition and the Beacon of Hope are helping to feed those in need in Clark County.

We urge you to consider donating extra food from your home, to purchase food to be donated or give monetarily to these organizations that are addressing a growing issue in our community and our state.

Feeding our neighbors, particularly the children of Clark County, should be a priority for us all.