GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) — September is Hunger Action Month and 9OYS is partnering with Feeding America to bring awareness to food insecurity. The pandemic and other issues are driving up hunger concerns.
“We have definitely seen an increase in the demand for food assistance,” said George Young, the Eastern Regional Director of the Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina.
Jobs lost from the pandemic has been a major cause of food insecurity, but there’s a more recent issue increasing food lines.
“We’re now in an inflationary cycle where you’re looking at 5.7% percent inflation,” Young said.
You can see that the inflationary cycle affecting Eastern North Carolina in gas prices and in food prices. There are 170,000 people who are experiencing food insecurity in ENC. 57,000 of those are children.
“Think about a package of chicken wings, might have been three or four dollars. Not just last week. A package of chicken wings was nine dollars. We’re not talking about a whole chicken we’re talking about chicken wings,” Young said.
One donated dollar provides five meals or $10 worth of food. And while food bank organizers say they’ll accept all sorts of donations, your checkbook could be the best way to feed people across the area.
While they rely on food drives from community partners like churches, they prefer monetary donations. That’s because they can directly buy food from manufacturers and food outlets at a reduced “food bank” rate.
“We can do a lot more with dollars to get the right kinds of food,” Young said.
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