What Is Hunger?


Food insecurity, as measured in the United States, refers to the social and economic problem of lack of food due to resource or other constraints, not voluntary fasting or dieting, or because of illness, or for other reasons.

food insecurity is experienced when there is (1) uncertainty about future food availability and access, (2) insufficiency in the amount and kind of food required for a healthy lifestyle, or (3) the need to use socially unacceptable ways to acquire food.Although lack of economic resources is the most common constraint, food insecurity can also be experienced when food is available and accessible but cannot be used because of physical or other constraints, such as limited physical functioning by elderly people or those with disabilities.

National Research Council. Food Insecurity and Hunger in the United States: An Assessment of the Measure. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press, 2006.

Senior Hunger 
Senior Hunger also referred to as elderly hunger affects more than 1 out of 6 seniors.  The growing senior population is just one of the reasons Florida is ranked in the top 10 states with senior hunger risk.  Click on the link above to find out more statistics on senior hunger in our area.

Barriers For Ending Senior Hunger
Growing senior population, skipping meals to pay for medications or other bills, home bound or no access to transportation, funding cuts, and rising cost of food and fuel.

National Senior Hunger Facts
34% increase in senior hunger in the U.S. since 2007. Florida ranked in the top 10 states for highest senior hunger risk. 16.64% of Florida seniors are at risk for hunger. 67% of seniors nationwide do not participate in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). African American seniors are a 132% higher risk of hunger than white seniors. Hispanic Seniors are 131% higher risk for hunger than non-Hispanics. 58.3% of seniors aged 60 to 69 are at risk for hunger.

Childhood Hunger
Childhood hunger is an ever increasing issue in our area.   In the past 5 years alone, there has been a 12% increase in children qualifying for free or reduced lunch.  While there are numerous new programs that help with childhood hunger, we continue to see need for new initiatives.  For information on programs in our area please use the link above.

Almost 62% of children in Hillsborough County qualify for a Free or Reduced Priced Meal – an increase of 12% from 5 years ago
103,987 qualify for free meals
13,670 for reduced meals
On average, 6 out of 10 children standing in the serving line are living below the poverty line
483 children are Homeless
523 children are from Foster Homes
619 are Migrant.