According to Feeding America's 2022 food insecurity data, hunger is an issue that affects millions of Americans every day. At times, it can seem like a distant problem, happening only in faraway countries or in urban areas with large homeless populations. But that is not the reality. The reality is that 41 million people are food insecure in our country, including 15 percent of people living right here in North Carolina. It is higher here in northeast North Carolina where 16 percent of the population lives with Food Insecurity. That means 48,010 people in northeast North Carolina towns and neighborhoods do not have regular access to enough food for a healthy, active life.
For children, the number is even higher: 25 percent of children face hunger right here in Bertie, Beaufort, Camden, Chowan, Currituck, Dare, Gates, Hertford, Hyde, Martin, Northampton, Pasquotank, Perquimans, Tyrrell, and Washington County —that is 1 in 4 children. Each of these individuals find themselves worrying about not having enough to eat. It might be the clerk who bags your groceries or the father down the street whose company cut his pay. Perhaps it‘s your elderly neighbor whose fixed income doesn’t come anywhere close to covering the cost of her medications or the child in your daughter’s class who has trouble paying attention to the lessons.
The people we serve are both children, families, veterans, students, senior citizens, single parents, unemployed and / or underemployed-- hunger can affect anyone.
At the Good Shepherd Food Pantry, we believe the prevalence of hunger in our community is unacceptable. We have the expertise to fight food insecurity in Bertie County, but we cannot do it alone. It is only through sophisticated and innovative partnerships that we can solve these problems and continue to serve the hungry families that rely on our services. Once all children have enough nutritious food that allow them to grow and learn - we’ve reached success.
Once every person has the food essentials they need to stay healthy - we’ve reached success. No matter what, we can ensure a stronger future for Bertie County and the entire state of North Carolina. By working together WE make that possible.