Child Food Insecurity

What is Food Insecurity?

  • Food insecurity is the condition of not having regular access to enough nutritious food for a healthy life.

Food Insecurity in Children:

  • Hungry children are sick more often, more likely to suffer growth impairment and incur developmental impairments that limit their physical, intellectual and emotional development.
  • Hungry children perform more poorly in school and have lower academic achievement.
  • Hungry children have more social and behavioral problems, as well as less energy for complex social interactions and cannot adapt to stresses as easily.

Studies Show:

  • One third of students have shown better grades as a result of backpack programs.
  • About two thirds of participating students appear less worried about food and healthier.
  • Over 50% of students demonstrate high self-esteem after receiving food from a backpack program.
  • About 50% of students experience a more trusting relationship with school personnel.
  • Backpack programs serve all the students in the classroom, not just the students receiving food assistance by decreasing behavior problems and improving the classroom environment.

Every Meal Surveys Show:

  • 94% of families responding indicate their child is more prepared for school as a result of Every Meal’s weekend food program.
  • 99% of families responding indicate their family is better supported by the as a result of our program.
  • Over 90% of school staff responding indicate our weekend food program has a positive impact on the children receiving the food in the following areas: Attendance (91%), Behavior (91%), (Self Esteem (95%), Attentiveness (94%), Academics (93%), and relationship with school staff (93%).
  • Over 90% of school staff responding indicate our weekend food program has a positive impact on the school in the following areas: Connection with Families (99%), Retention of Students (92%), and More supported by the Community (99%).

Information provided by:
Yana V. Rodgers & Marika Milewska (2007) FOOD ASSISTANCE THROUGH THE SCHOOL SYSTEM, Journal of Children and Poverty, 13:1, 75-95
Cook, John & Jeng, Karen. (2009) Child Food Insecurity: The Economic Impact on our Nation. Feeding America.