Hunger and food insecurity don’t discriminate: they affect people of all ages, races, and genders. They exist in every community in Cook County. They happen everywhere and could be affecting someone in your neighborhood today.
What Is Food Insecurity?
Food insecurity is the condition where people cannot reliably access adequate, nutritious food. Lack of financial and other resources can cause it. People who are food insecure struggle to avoid hunger, a more narrow physiological condition.
Hunger is what you feel when you don’t have enough to eat. Food insecurity is the set of circumstances that prevent your access to food.
Food Insecurity Facts
- According to Feeding America’s Map the Meal Gap Study, one in seven people in Cook County will experience food insecurity this year.
- The Food Depository serves more than 812,000 individuals or 232,100 households each year.
- Food insecurity varies greatly across the county. In some communities, more than half of all residents are food insecure.
- Food insecurity is usually episodic and often cyclical. People may require assistance a single time, for a few months, or on a more regular basis.
- There is no one face of food insecurity. The need varies among children, older adults, people with disabilities, veterans, the working poor, and others, as does the best way of reaching them.
- Making tradeoff decisions between paying for food and other basic needs such as medical bills and housing is common among Food Depository clients.
- Many food insecure households do not qualify for federal nutrition assistance programs.