Food insecurity can happen to anyone. An individual or family could face one tragedy, one job loss or simply a collection of challenging situations and circumstances and find themselves making difficult decisions and tradeoffs. According to Hunger in the Heartlands, a 2021 study conducted by the University of Missouri, people across Missouri are being asked to balance the cost of food with the cost of medical care, rent, and utilities. Many individuals are finding themselves at their breaking point, and The Food Bank of Northeast & Central Missouri is grateful to have the opportunity and ability to help.
The Food Bank supports as many as 100,000 neighbors in 32 counties every month. We do this by partnering with more than 145 agencies and nearly 200 schools to share millions of meals annually. 1 in 9 people in our service area are facing food insecurity, and that number is likely growing.
To make the future of Missouri brighter, we have innovated our work in ways that will make the biggest impact. This is why we have put forth increased time and resources to support vulnerable populations such as children, seniors, veterans and rural communities through our special programs. In 2022, The Food Bank’s special programs helped:
-Kids by partnering with schools to get food to 7,000 students each week of the school year.
- Seniors by sharing pantry staples and other supplemental nutrition through 2,880 monthly Senior Boxes (CSFP).
- Veterans by providing food and supplies through 500 monthly VIP Veteran Boxes.
- Rural communities, including serving neighbors in rural and underserved neighborhoods 118,000 times through 252 Mobile Pantry events.
To help sustain our work into the future so that neighbors can better work toward food security, we have also incorporated solutions like nutrition education, SNAP application assistance and School Markets into our focused efforts.
Students have found School Markets, which are easily accessible food pantries located within school buildings, to be especially helpful in providing food for families over the weekends. Some students have shared that food from their local School Markets “… gets me through the day when I am hungry."
Additionally, Veterans have also expressed their gratitude to The Food Bank for the special programs and resources provided, saying “I lost my job from COVID downsizing, and I have some disabilities, so it has been difficult finding a full-time job again and I’m older than 55. I’m a veteran and I appreciate the Veteran Boxes that are donated as well.”
The impact of The Food Bank’s work is simply invaluable to our community. While our effort to end hunger is a huge undertaking, our supporters make it possible for This Food Bank to provide nutritious food to neighbors each and every month. Because of The Food Bank's bulk purchasing power, every $1 gift helps provide at least four meals to neighbors. That means setting up an automatic monthly donation of just $5 can provide 240 meals annually, while a $25 monthly donation can add up to 1,200 meals each year. Your investment can help The Food Bank share food and bring hope to even more Missourians in the future.