Two million people in Illinois deal with food insecurity, and in eastern Illinois that number is about 80,000, according to a study released by the group, Feeding America. It’s a problem that’s being addressed through programs like the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP. Local food pantries are also working hard to feed people who need food assistance. At the 5th annual hunger symposium on Sept. 27, 2011 in Champaign, food insecurity took front stage. The event was put on by the Eastern Illinois Food Bank and the Family Resiliency Center.
The 2008 recession has taken its toll up and down U.S. Route 150 - and the U.S. Department of Agriculture says almost every Illinois county along the 150 corridor has seen an uptick in 2010 in use of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, better known as food stamps. But anti-hunger advocates say many people who have lost their jobs are NOT taking advantage of SNAP. Illinois Public Media's Dave Dickey reports as a part of our series "Life on Route 150.
With the economy shaky and unemployment up, more people are turning to food pantries for help in getting enough to eat. In east-central Illinois, food pantries -- and the regional food bank that supplies them -- say more people are coming to them for help, some of them for the first time. Illinois Public Media's Jim Meadows reports.
Illinois Public Media's Celeste Quinn talks with Executive Director of the Eastern Illinois Food Bank Jim Hires, Financial Counselor at Salt & Light Ministry Scott Olthoff, and Salt & Light Ministry Volunteer and Recipient Marie Brown.