Study finds increase in food-insecurity nationwide

Cedar Rapids, Iowa (KCRG) – Tens of millions of American families struggle to afford seven days’ worth of groceries, according to a new survey conducted by Hunger Free America.

According to the report, the number of people who self-reported that they were not eating enough has nearly doubled since last year. 177,233 in 2021 and 332,744 in 2022.

“There are a lot of people who are suffering,” said Kari Redondo, Marion Church pantry manager.

Redondo said he is feeling the impact of that increase. She said about 35 families used the food pantry a week last year. That increase is also adding extra costs to their efforts.

“I see it when I go to the grocery store,” said Redondo. “Inflation has made everything more expensive.”

The survey cited a shortage of COVID-19 relief benefits and rising inflation as one of the reasons for the increase. It wasn’t just Redondo’s tiny pantry that was affected.

Raymond Siddell, founder of Together We Achieve, said:

By 2021, it has served 5,156 households, according to Siddell. That number nearly doubled this year, bringing him to 9,044.

“It’s not a shock, but unfortunately, we’re seeing more and more people needing to use our department more than once a week,” says Siddell.

Despite the strain the increase will place on these centers, there are no plans to slow down.

“I don’t want anyone to suffer,” said Redondo. “I don’t want to bother anyone.”

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