Loaves & Fishes’ Annual Client Survey Shows No Significant Improvement in Food Insecurity in Meck. Co.
North Carolina continues to rank among the fifteen worst states in the percentage of children lacking food on a regular basis. During the month of October Loaves & Fishes conducted a survey of our clients to better understand the realities they face in trying to provide a basic meal for their families.
A total of 809 individual households responded to the survey which was held in Loaves & Fishes’ pantries located throughout Mecklenburg County. The survey highlights our clients’ ongoing struggle with food insecurity, transportation issues and affordable housing.
- 93% of respondents often or sometimes worry about food running out, have had food run out (91.5%), ate less due to lack of food/money to buy food (84.9%), and did not eat due to lack of food/money to buy food (71.6%). These numbers show no significant improvement over 2015 (93.6%, 93.5% and 70.9% respectively).
- When respondents run out of food, 1 in 5 or 20% responded that they don’t eat. Other common responses were to eat less, make-do, or to make sure that their kids eat.
- Half of respondents (49.9%) relied on modes of transportation other than their own vehicles to reach our pantries, such as having a friend or family member drive them, took the bus or walked.
- 53% of respondents indicated that because they received groceries from Loaves & Fishes, they will use the money that they saved to pay rent.
- Loaves & Fishes also announced a change in eligibility requirements for clients. Instead of a 45 day wait between pantry visits, clients can now make up to 8 consecutive visits in 365 days. This change will help better fulfill our mission to assist people with nutritionally balanced groceries. It is our hope that this change will better reflect the real life situations where many families and individuals face a crisis that may last several weeks.
- To view the full survey and results: Loaves & Fishes Client Survey
Loaves & Fishes is a nonprofit emergency food pantry program that provides a week’s worth of nutritionally balanced groceries, at no cost, to individuals and families who are experiencing a crisis. Loaves & Fishes operates a network of 20 pantries located throughout Mecklenburg County.