Hunger Affects Washington County Residents

The holiday season is approaching and people are beginning to plan for big meals. But, there’s a large number of people in the area that aren’t sure where their next meal is coming from.

Arkansas is tied with Mississippi for being the most food insecure state in the nation, according to the United States Department of Agriculture.

Food insecurity is defined by the government as someone that does not have three stable healthy nutritious meals.

The federal program, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, formerly known as food stamps experienced budget cuts Nov. 1. About 5% of the benefits were dropped.

Kimberly Napier has a four-year-old son and said she has experienced the cutbacks.

“I have no other choice, I can’t buy clothes now for school and he’s school age now and without this place, I don’t know what I would do,” she said.

Napier visits LifeSource, a Fayetteville community assistance center, often to fulfill her basic needs of food and clothing for her and her son.

The Northwest Arkansas area is ranked second for having the most populations dealing with poverty, hunger and food insecurity. It is predicted that by 2015, Washington County will be number one in food insecurity, according to the department of agriculture.

A Food Justice Summit is being held to educate people on food issues in society starting Tuesday (Nov. 12). For more information on the event, visit this website.

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