Did you know that almost 1 billion people from around the world struggle from food insecurity? Food insecurity can have devastating effects on a family. When people lack access to healthy foods, both their physical and mental health suffer as a result. That’s why the Mount of Olives is dedicated to building and nurturing urban farms both in the U.S. and internationally.
Urban farming benefits all members of a community and empowers them to take control of their mission. To learn more about food insecurity and its effects, check out our latest blog post now.
What is Food Insecurity?
The Mount of Olives explains this complex issue
Food insecurity is defined as a lack of consistent and proper access to healthy and nutritious food. Severe hunger typically results from food insecurity, as the person suffering from it does not have the physical or financial means to access sufficient food. People can end up facing food insecurity from a number of reasons, such as:
- Living in an area that does not have close access to decent food markets
- Suffering from the loss of a loved one who brought a significant amount of income to the household
- Dealing with high medical costs that cut down on their food budget
For U.S. citizens, these are the most common causes behind food insecurity. But for other nations, larger societal and environmental issues also play a large role. Other common underlying issues that can cause food insecurity around the world include:
- Climatic extremes, such as a long drought or a flood, that causes the crops to suffer
- Dealing with an unequal distribution of food in certain areas
- Issues of conflict in different regions
- High rates of population growth
Levels of Food Insecurity
Food insecurity is usually measured on a scale of four different levels. Households with very low food insecurity often deal with multiple disruptions in their eating schedule due to a lack of sufficient funds. On the other end of the spectrum are people with secure and high food security. These households have no issues with accessing adequate food nor do they have any anxiety about finding nutritious food from low levels of money.
Who is Affected by Food Insecurity?
Food insecurity is a serious problem that affects millions of people
Food insecurity impacts every community in both the U.S. and abroad. In fact, 27% of the world’s population were found to be food insecure. The rise of global food prices has further exacerbated this problem. Low-income countries also tend to be more impacted by food insecurity than high-income countries.
Signs of Food Insecurity
There are a number of signs that someone is struggling with food insecurity. If you or someone you never ever had to deal with the below, you might be struggling with some sign of food insecurity:
- Worried about running out of food due to a lack of money or nearby resources
- Had to skip a meal or even went a whole day without eating because of poor financial situation
- Refused to eat even if you felt hungry because of lack of access to decent food
Common Risk Factors for Food Insecurity
People who face the risk of food insecurity tend to suffer from lower levels of education and a lack of access to a supportive social network. It is important to note that lower levels of education can make it difficult for people to find decent-paying jobs. This, in turn, gives them a tighter budget to deal with.
Having a supportive network during your time in need is crucial. If you are suffering from an illness or injury, friends and family can help support you and your children. But if you don’t have a supportive network ready to help you, you will find yourself at risk of experiencing food insecurity.
Results of Food Insecurity
So, what happens when food insecurity is left untreated? Unfortunately, victims of food insecurity suffer from severe health problems like malnutrition, cognitive problems, and depression. That’s why programs like the Mount of Olives are dedicated to fighting food insecurity around the world.
How Can We Help?
Urban farming benefits members of these underserved communities
The Mount of Olives is dedicated to breathing life into areas that have suffered from years of disinvestment. By bringing awareness of urban farming to citizens in Pittsburgh and around the world, we can help people at risk of suffering from food insecurity. Not only can residents enjoy easy and less expensive access to nutritious food, but they can also feel empowered by nurturing and taking care of their own urban farms.
Urban farming benefits communities around the world. Residents learn new entrepreneurial skills as they grow and cultivate their own gardens. People finally have access to healthy and nutritious food. With help from people like you, the Mount of Olives can continue to help people in underserved communities around the world? Interested in learning more about how you can help? Contact the Mount of Olives today for more information!