Hunger In Our Community

More People are Hungry

Even as the economy recovers, the number of visits to local food shelves has increased in recent years. Our hungry neighbors often tell us they’re working fewer hours or making less than before, while costs for everything from rent to food have gone up.

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While these tough economic conditions are hard on many people, for seniors with fixed incomes and costly medical expenses, it can be a serious struggle. Seniors are now one of our fastest growing populations served.

Graphic: We serve about 532,000 people each year.

Graphic: More than 33% of individuals served by Second Harvest Heartland are children under 18 years old.

Graphic: 10% of the people Second Harvest Heartland served are seniors over age 60.

Graphic: 68% of households have a member who worked for pay in the past year.

Video - Hunger and Working Families

People Make Difficult Choices

No senior living on a fixed income should have to choose between buying food or medicine. But, we often see people in our region faced with tough choices between paying for food and other necessities throughout the year.

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  • 63 percent63 percent choose housing over paying for food
  • 71 percent71 percent choose between transportation expenses and food
  • 67 percent67 percent choose medical care or medicine over food
  • 71 percent71 percent choose paying for utilities over food

*All service area stats above are from 2014 Hunger in America Study from Feeding America

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More Food to More People

No one should have to make these tough choices. That’s why, with your support, we’re working every day to find simple ways to help stabilize lives.

And we’re feeding more people than ever before. In fiscal year 2015, Second Harvest Heartland helped provide 77 million meals to people struggling with hunger in Minnesota and western Wisconsin. For the first time ever, we’re proud that fresh food—produce, meat, dairy and baked goods—made up more than half of the food we distributed.

How We’re Doing it:

  • Accepting and distributing donations from our 90,000+ square feet of dry, refrigerator and freezer space
  • Driving nearly half a million miles each year in our fleet of trucks, picking up and delivering to more than 1,000 partners
  • Linking children, families, adults and seniors to publicly and privately funded food programs
  • Leveraging data to proactively identify hunger needs and develop targeted strategies

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