Senior hunger is an issue seldom talked about. The Meals On Wheels Research Foundation (MOWRF) has commissioned a series of annual reports detailing the state of senior hunger in the U.S. The 2010 research report is a follow up to the 2008 and 2009 research studies.
Here are some facts:
- 8.3 million seniors faced the threat of hunger in 2010.
- 14.85% of seniors, or more than 1 in 7 experienced some form of food insecurity.
- In 2005, that number was 1 in 9 seniors or 11.4%.
- From 2001 to 2010, the number of seniors experiencing the threat of hunger has increased by 78%.
- Since the onset of the recession in 2007 through 2010, the number of seniors threatened by hunger increased by 34%.
Between 2009 and 2010, the percentage of seniors threatened by hunger increased by a statistically significant amount. The recession had more enduring effects for older Americans than for the general population. For the decade as a whole, there was a 39% increase in those facing the threat of hunger, but the number of seniors affected increased 78%.
Those more likely to be at risk of hunger include:
- A younger senior under the age of 70.
- African American or Hispanic Seniors.
- Those living in a rural area.
- Those divorced or separated or living with a grandchild.
Meals on Wheels has found that 6 million seniors face the threat of hunger. Their goal is to match that number – with 6 million people who are willing to stand up and pledge to do what it takes to end senior hunger. Take their pledge and get involved.
Contact your local program to deliver or prepare a meal. Meals On Wheels volunteers also provide the seniors they serve with companionship and a warm, friendly smile when they arrive at the door.