As part of its ongoing efforts to reduce food insecurity in rural communities, No Kid Hungry, a national campaign of Share Our Strength, has invested a total of $438,000 across nine organizations to identify, document, and better understand promising practices to achieve food security in rural communities.
Selected grantees for the “Promising Practices to End Rural Child Hunger” cohort include: Aloha Harvest (HI), Kern County Library (CA), Kids At Their Best (CO), Catholic Charities of Northeast Kansas, Feeding the Gulf Coast (MS), Delta Fresh Foods Initiative (MS), Quality Care for Children (GA), Lowcountry Food Bank (SC), and Southeastern Housing and Community Development (SC).
Each of these organizations has adopted a community-centered, equity-driven approach to reducing food insecurity, with established credibility in the communities they serve. These nine organizations will also work together as a learning community to share best practices and propel each other to stronger, more effective models for local adoption.
According to Derrick Lambert, Senior Manager with Share Our Strength, “As a result of this grant initiative, and as a direct consequence of the important work of grantees embedded in local communities, we anticipate being able to glean insights and lessons learned which can be more easily shared with leaders in other rural communities seeking to not only address immediate food access needs, but also disrupt the root causes of hunger in their communities.”
Poverty and food insecurity can pose considerable challenges for those in rural communities and are symptoms of deeper root causes. Families in rural areas may face unique circumstances that contribute to and exacerbate food insecurity, including limited food retail options, transportation challenges, and constraints in community program access and availability.
“At the same time, we know that rural communities possess a unique mix of opportunities and assets in the fight to end child food insecurity and are excited to leverage insights gained from this cohort to support authentic community engagement to that end,” says Lambert.
Lowcountry Food Bank will partner with the East Coast Migrant Head Start to provide at least 70 children and their families each month during the summer with pre-packed boxes containing 20 pounds of culturally appropriate shelf-stable food, and will also be able to provide the children with approximately 10 pounds of fresh produce.
Lowcountry Food Bank also hopes to promote greater awareness of, and access to, Summer Food Service Program sites in the counties they serve and expand access to summer meals by partnering with libraries in Williamsburg County.
The project also aims to host meal distribution events at local schools and build permanent school food pantries to serve kids and their families during the summer and beyond.
About No Kid Hungry
No child should go hungry in America. But in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, 1 in 4 kids could face hunger this year. No Kid Hungry is working to end childhood hunger by helping launch and improve programs that give all kids the healthy food they need to thrive. This is a problem we know how to solve. No Kid Hungry is a campaign of Share Our Strength, an organization committed to ending hunger and poverty. Join us at NoKidHungry.org.
About the Lowcountry Food Bank: Feed. Advocate. Empower.
The Lowcountry Food Bank serves the 10 coastal counties of South Carolina and distributed more than 39 million pounds of food in 2020. The Lowcountry Food Bank helps fight hunger by distributing food to nearly 300 partner agencies including on-site meal programs, homeless shelters and emergency food pantries. The Lowcountry Food Bank advocates on behalf of those who experience hunger and helps empower people to make healthy and nutritious food choices. For more information, go to the Lowcountry Food Bank website at lowcountryfoodbank.org