September is Hunger Action Month. It is a time set aside when individuals and organizations work to help fight food insecurity. The numbers of families now facing food insecurity continues to rise. According to the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), food insecurity is defined as the lack of consistent access to enough food for every person in a household to live an active, healthy life.
Food banks and food shelves here in the Slate Valley region have seen a marked increase in the numbers of families accessing assistance as they struggle to keep food on the table. This month the Castleton Woman’s Club held a small food drive to help support both the Slate Valley Cares and Castleton Cares Food Shelves. Other organizations are also hosting events in our area.
According to the USDA, in 2021:
33.8 million people lived in food-insecure households.
8.6 million adults lived in households with very low food security.
5.0 million children lived in food-insecure households in which children, along with adults, were food insecure.
521,000 children (.7% of the Nation’s children) lived in households in which one or more children experienced very low food security.
Families have continued to struggle over the past three years due to a number of factors. The need is real here in our communities.
One way you can help with food insecurity is to contact your local food shelf for information on what they need. Many need volunteers to help serve those neighbors in need. This month, won’t you please think about one way you might be able to reach out to a local food shelf in your community.
I know I will be attending the Fall Festival to benefit Slate Valley Cares (formerly Fair Haven Concerned). If you would also like to help out, tickets are still available at their office on Main Street in Fair Haven or call them at (802) 265-3666. The need is real.
Ceil Hunt, Fair Haven