Food insecurity refers to the USDA’s measure of lack of regular access to nutritional food for an active and healthy life. Feeding America estimates that the food insecurity rate in Tuscarawas County is 16.8 percent of the total population, a 29 percent increase caused by COVID-19. The child food insecurity rate is 26.1 percent, a 39 percent increase caused by the pandemic.
Food Insecurity Rate
Child Food Insecurity Rate
Your Foodbank’s Response
In 2020, your Foodbank distributed 4,649,390 pounds of food and essential items to families in need Tuscarawas County, the equivalent of 3,839,634 meals. Of that, 1,072,280 pounds was fresh, nutritious produce, which was distributed for free.
Your support helps Mike
When Mike was a young man, he worked on boilers for the government, traveling frequently and exploring new cities. But at the mere age of 26, he was in a catastrophic car accident that impacted the rest of his life.
Mike was in a coma for 98 days suffering significant head trauma and was hospitalized for a year. In rehab, he had to learn how to walk and talk again. Though he lives independently, he has a difficult time getting around and still experiences mental health complications.
Twenty years later, Mike has a positive outlook on life, greets everyone with a smile, and doesn’t hesitate to remove his cap to show the large scar on his head.
But it can be difficult for Mike to make ends meet while living on a fixed income. He openly talks about needing to ‘scrimp’, save and adhere to a strict budget. Sometimes, he needs a little extra help to get him through the end of the month, and that’s when he visits his local pantry.
“I’ve met a lot of good people here. This place means a lot to me. It gets me through the last two weeks of the month when I need it.”
When reflecting on the generosity of others, Mike says, “There’s a lot of people who experience hunger in our community.”