Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Hunger in America

Hunger in America has recently been spotlighted in media. While this tends to be the season that hunger is identified and promoted as a social concern, it is dramatically highlighted with data that looked at Georgia and the 10-County ARC region.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Georgia is ranked 13th in the nation when it comes to poverty levels, and 12.6% of Georgia’s senior population is living in poverty – that’s ranked 7th in the nation. Data from research on this project confirms that in Fulton County alone, 67% of seniors, age 65 and over are considered low-income, very low-income, or extremely low-income.

We often hear stories from clients who have to choose between spending their little amounts of income, some as low as $400 a month, on medication, utilities, insurance, or food. Oftentimes it is food that is cut out of their spending plan. With chronic diseases so many seniors have, eliminating food/nourishment is not the best plan of action.

Senior Citizen Services’ Meals On Wheels Atlanta program works to identify people and begin serving them with nutritious meals. The Urgent Meal program, a sub-program of Meals On Wheels Atlanta, strives to begin services to clients in dire need within 24 hours or less.

Meals On Wheels Atlanta has the capacity to serve more seniors in need but as always, we lack funding to support all who are in need. This causes us to have to rank in order of priority those who are in desperate need and those who can wait. Currently, we are serving 278 seniors – you can help us serve more.

During this holiday season, I ask that you consider giving a charitable monetary gift to SCS’ Meals On Wheels Atlanta program, or increase your annual gift. For a mere $150, one senior will receive meals for a month – join the ‘Fund a Month of Meals’ program. Contact us to learn more.

By Patrick O'Kane
Director of Operations

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