As we approach the eleventh month anniversary of COVID-19 officially being declared a global pandemic, we continue to be browbeaten by many problems affecting a growing global population. One of these issues is food insecurity.
But what is food insecurity?
“According to the United Nations’ Committee on World Food Security, food security is defined as the means that all people, at all times, have physical, social, and economic access to sufficient, safe, and nutritious food that meets their food preferences and dietary needs for an active and healthy life.”
Food insecurity is an issue that affects many all around the world. 1 in 4 Americans struggle from food insecurity on a daily basis. 40% of the population in India suffers from food insecurity. But what causes food insecurity?
Food insecurity occurs when an individual is unable to reach their daily nutrition requirements. This happens when either enough resources aren’t available, or when a family is unable to afford them. This occurs much more frequently if a family member faces unemployment or struggles from a drop in income.
With COVID-19 spiking rates of unemployment – leading to lay-offs and decreased working hours and wages, food insecurity has been exacerbated with the global pandemic. Look no further than my local food bank, where the population of individuals in need of healthy food more than doubled – from 500 to 1100 – after the pandemic began. According to feeding America, 17 million more people have suffered from food insecurity from the start of the pandemic, a number that has not begun to decline. And as several food banks struggle to raise funds and with many of their volunteers, who tend to be elderly individuals, quarantining as to not be exposed to the virus, it is imperative that we continue to take a stand against food insecurity.
I would urge each of us to volunteer at local food banks and help in food distribution, and to donate through the fundraiser I have on NutritionNow.org as we continue this fight against food insecurity.