Campus Kitchens Project, Inc.
AmeriCorps National Direct FY 2011(New)
The Campus Kitchens Project is requesting funding to develop a National Service Corp of 20 who will work at new Campus Kitchens, partner with a service and job training core and work with existing Campus Kitchens. Each member would be part of the CKP network's work to combat hunger and use service as use service as a tool to strengthen, empower minds and build communities. The Campus Kitchens Project was developed in 2001 as a replicable method of combating hunger one community at a time. We believe that the answer to hunger and poverty lies beyond simply providing food; the answer lies in developing strong leadership that can bring about large-scale change. CKP finds this leadership in our nation's schools where students are not only studying the nation's major social problems, including poverty and hunger, but are developing sustainable solutions. According to the USDA (2009), 14.7% of Americans suffer from food insecurity with 5.7% suffering from lack of food often. According to the Meals on Wheels Association of America, by 2025, an estimated 9.5 million senior Americans will experience some form of food insecurity, approximately 75% higher than in 2005 and 40% of Meals on Wheels programs have a waiting list. In 2008, 55% of food insecure households used federal food and nutrition assistance programs, 4.8 million households obtained emergency food from a food pantry at least once, and an additional 625,000 households ate one or more meals at an emergency kitchen in their community. Of the 50 million Americans suffering with hunger and food insecurity, 17 million are children. More than 23% of St. Louis residents--more than 80,000 people in all--live below the poverty line. The St. Louis Foodbank reports that 39% of its clients are children. Similarly, both the Greater Chicago Food Depository and Spokane's Second Harvest of the Inland Northwest find that 37% of their clients are children. These rising needs are not being met by other area organizations, as an astounding 29% of Chicago food pantries reported turning clients away in 2009. In Spokane, 20% of all households served by food pantries are led by single parents while 57% of all parent clients report skipping meals so their children can eat. While Milwaukee's general poverty rate stands at 26%, this figure swells to 33% among the city's children. The Boston Rescue Mission found that in 2009, the number of individuals on the street rose 11%. Boston's fastest-growing homeless population is families. Homeless and low-income families in each of these five cities are facing rising food insecurity. In Massachusetts, there is an estimated 464,000 people at risk of food insecurity and approximately 71,000 in Worcester County who rely on emergency food supplies due to hunger and the inability to access other food sources. 4% of the Worcester population over 16 years old is unemployed and another 36% of individuals are not in the work force. 14.8% of families in Worcester are living below the poverty line. According to Jean McMurrary, director of the Worcester County Food Bank, 66% of households who receive assistance from the Worcester County Foodbank have incomes at or below the federal poverty level and 77 % of households are food insecure. According to the Food Research Action Center's 2009 food insecurity study, New York ranked 27th in food insecurity in the nation and three of its major metro statistical areas made the list of the 100 hungriest cities in the US. 12.4% of households or 941,000 homes are food insecure and 40.2% of children receive free or reduced lunch. In 2009, NY saw a decrease of 22.3% in the amount of summer feeding that occurred in the state and an 8.9% increase in use of WIC (Women, Infants and Children) benefits. In Ulster County, 12% of the population utilizes Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Programs (SNAP). Hunger does not have a specific demographic which it affects, but rather affects all populations.