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“When Did I See You Hungry?”

- Reflections on Poverty in Ohio

The stats are clear! Of Ohio’s 11.4 million residents, the percentage of those with incomes at or below the federal poverty level has continued to climb dramatically in recent years:

· Population living in poverty: over 17 %
· Ohioans receiving food stamps: nearly a million
· Children in poverty & experiencing food insecurity: 1/2 million
· Children experiencing hunger: 129,000
· One in six children is hungry or at risk of hunger

Ohioans are suffering from loss of jobs, housing, health insurance, and subsistence incomes. A growing number of people in our state are not only poorer but, yes, increasingly often hungry. But isn’t that relatively small compared to “real” hunger witnessed in other parts of the planet? Don’t these figures pale in comparison to the 850 million people globally who are food deprived or the 30,000 people who die daily of hunger and malnutrition in third world countries?

Sure. Admittedly hunger in the U.S. is not as widespread, severe, or dramatic, yet hunger is real to those experiencing it wherever they live. The real question is, “Do we clearly see them and understand their depth of need?”

Does your group need a speaker? Learn more about poverty & hunger and how you can help. Contact West Ohio Hunger Relief Advocate George “Tater” Jensen by emailing tatergep [at] roadrunner.com or calling 419-494-5321. No place is too close or too far to go for this mission.

Hunger Network in Ohio

SoSA Gleaning Network

Resolution on Hunger (SoSA)

UMCOR