Kentucky newspapers did a tremendous job in 2019 helping to promote Hunger Action Month and the successes from that continue today. There are still examples almost weekly of the communities and organizations around the state helping to end hunger and much of that stems from newspapers making the public aware of how severe it is.
September is always designated as Hunger Action Month so we hope you’ll start thinking about what your staff might do to educate your readers about the project and to bring their attention to those who wonder where their next meal is coming from.
Tamara Sandberg, executive director of Feeding Kentucky, is preparing this year’s media packet and the plan is for KPA to make it available to you around August 14.
The packet will include some current data on food insecurity in Kentucky and with hope the effort you made in educating the public will show Kentucky has improved over previous years.
Here’s part of the information released in September 2019 just to refresh your memory:
A report released in mid-September, 2019, by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) found that 1 in 9 households in the United States encountered difficulty at some time during 2018 in providing enough food for their family. This represents a decline of 0.7 percentage points from last year and is the lowest rate since prior to the recession.
The report underscores that while progress has been made, Kentucky has more work to do to address food insecurity. Food insecurity is a lack of consistent access to enough food for an active, healthy life for all household members.
The prevalence of food insecurity in Kentucky remains higher than the national average. The average rate of household food insecurity among Kentucky households from 2016 -2018 was 14.7 percent. The average national rate over the same time period was 11.7 percent. State-level estimates were obtained by averaging 3 years of data in order to have a larger sample size to provide more reliable statistics.
Start thinking now about how your newspaper can educate the public about Hunger Action Month and what projects you might get involved in or initiate.