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Harvesters feeds nearly 100,000 children a year through our network of pantries, food kitchens and shelters. We also provide 17,000 BackSnacks to kids every weekend and in 2018, our Kids Cafe program provided more than 352,037 summer and after-school meals.
Programs for children
Many families, including many working families, are struggling to meet basic needs and put food on the table. Our clients tell us:
• 63 percent have had to choose between paying for utilities and buying groceries.
• 54 percent have had to choose between paying the rent or mortgage and buying food.
• 62 percent have had to choose between paying for medicine or medical care and buying groceries.
Programs for families
As Baby Boomers age, the need for food assistance by older adults is projected to increase. The latest research shows there are 70.5 million seniors living in the United States. By 2050, it’s estimated the senior population will grow to 104 million.
A Feeding America study, State of Senior Hunger, (released in 2019) reports 5.5 million seniors were food insecure in 2017, including 2.2 million seniors who experienced very low food security.
Food insecurity among seniors varies by state and region. In Kansas, 9.4 percent of seniors is food insecure (9th highest in the country) and in Missouri the rate is 7.3 percent. In the Kansas City, Mo. metropolitan area, the senior food insecurity rate is 8.2 percent.
In addition, food-insecure seniors are at higher risk for depression and chronic diseases. They are 40 percent more likely to experience chest pain and 55 percent more likely to develop asthma. As this infographic shows, many seniors face health and mobility problems that limit their access to healthy food.
Programs for seniors
Harvesters educates about the issue of hunger and offers nutrition resources to our network of agencies.