When we think of hunger, our mind naturally envisions impoverished children living in other parts of the world. It is difficult for many of us to consider that hunger exists right here in our own backyard.
Yes, there is hunger in Palm Beach County:
In the most recent “food insecurity” survey conducted in Palm Beach County, 1 in 3 households with incomes less than or equal to $35,000 ran out of food before they had money to buy more. During a door-to-door survey of a sample of households with children, fully 20% of these households cut the size of children’s meals because there was not enough money for food. The need has worsened with the economic downturn.
Recent data tells us why hunger in Palm Beach County is at record levels today:
- 10% unemployment for the last several years
- More than 2,000 homeless residents
- 175,000+ residents currently receive supplemental nutrition assistance benefits (food stamps). This represents nearly a 300% increase from 2007-2011
- 56% of Palm Beach county students receive free or reduced-price lunch
- The 211 Helpline has seen a 30% jump in calls for food over the past 12 months
- Almost 17% of Palm Beach County residents often don’t know where their next meal will come from.
The Soup Kitchen of Boynton Beach is one of several organizations in Palm Beach County that helps feed the hungry. We function as both a soup kitchen and food pantry.
- A SOUP KITCHEN preparing and serving a hot meal every day.
- A FOOD PANTRY distributing food (typically non-perishable canned goods, bread or produce) to low-income, unemployed and/or homeless individuals and families.