Sumary of How the Pandemic Made Hunger Worse—And What It Looks Like Going Forward:
- From April through September of 2020, $8.4 billion in combined SNAP and P-EBT benefits were redeemed per month—an increase of 86.4% compared to the same period in 2019, according to the USDA Economic Research Service..
- To supplement the federal aid, many members of marginalized communities have come up with their own imaginative solutions to help alleviate hunger on the local level..
- “Although federal food assistance programs were the most critical to families’ survival, food pantries and other private and non-profit forms of support—often small-scale—were essential stop-gaps when the federal programs were insufficient or unavailable.”.
- This was evident last summer in North Carolina, where La Semilla, a group of immigrant community organizers, distributed almost 800 boxes of fresh produce a week to mostly undocumented families living in mobile home parks throughout Durham and Raleigh..
- Organizers teamed up with local supermarkets to bring boxes of fresh food to COVID-19 testing sites and community vaccination events, providing a sharper lens into necessary changes around public health and mutual aid..
- “It was important that others [outside the immigrant community] saw with their own eyes the reality of the situation:.
- Back in Kentucky, Lynne found relief in weekly boxes of food from CANE Kitchen, or Community Agriculture Nutritional Enterprises, in Letcher County….