Hunger in VA and the World

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Lewei zhang 1
Lewei Zhang
ENG 112
19/11/2017
Hunger in Virginia and the World
According to the most recent statistics, over one million people are going hungry every day,
which equals to the one sixtieth of the world’s overall population. And according to the Food and
Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations (UN) report of the State of Food Insecurity in
the World in 2016, every six seconds a child dies because of hunger and related causes. With the
growth of the world population, the number of people starving also grows proportionally. On June 19,
2009, the FAO reported 120 million people around the world are undernourished, most of them live in
the developing countries (poverty). People living in poverty-stricken countries cannot afford
nutritious food for themselves. As of 2016, the World Bank has estimated that there were 896 million
poor people in developing countries who live on $1.25 a day or less.
War and social instability is among the most cited reasons for world hunger. One of the important
impacts of war is disputing resources. According to a survey, the Center for Research on the
Epidemiology of Disasters (CRED) estimates that more than 172 million people were affected by
conflict worldwide. Internally displaced persons accounted for another 18 million and refugees for
five million. In 2014, more than 13 million people had to leave their countries (Clapp 1). Most of
them fled from armed conflicts in Somalia,Syria and Afghanistan. The poorest people of society
suffer the worst during war and conflict: in a country with an armed conflict, economic growth
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reduces by an average of 2.3 per cent and that will takes 17 years to make up for this loss. Conflict
exacerbates the level of hunger experienced in a region.
One in eight Americans, translating to 42 million, face challenges of getting sufficient food to eat.
Although the figure has declined in the recent past, hunger has been increasing in economically
distressed areas, particularly within the rural community (Gundersen et al.300). Food banks have been
affected and surplus food supplies are declining as more people seek relief food. Feeding America
Southwest Virginia is among the food banks that has taken steps to address the shortage by tackling
the root causes of hunger like unemployment, health problems, and poverty (Gundersen et al.300).
The Southwest Virginia foodbank offers 15 million meals annually to individuals affected by poverty
in the state. According to the organization, 16% of residents in the Buchanan County cannot access
food, with poverty rate being 29%, two times that of national level.
Food security is identified as a scenario when all individuals at all times can access food n
sufficient, safe, and nutritious amounts to sustain a healthy and active life, as defined according to the
World Food Summit of 1996(1) (Gundersen et al.300). Food insecurity, consequently, is when an
individual’s food supply is either occasionally or always insufficient, unhealthy, or unsafe, making it
impossible to live a healthy lifestyle. It comprises of disrupted intake of meals, reduced quality of
food, a sense of worrying with where food will come from, increased reliance on emergency food
supply, and inability to eat according to food preferences. Access to food is not categorized as a right
in the United States with over 15 million children living in food-insecure households (Gundersen et
al.300). In Virginia, where according to USDA, the statistics point to the lowest rate of childhood
food insecurity, the state experience food insecurity at a rate of 11.8%, which translates to roughly
Lewei zhang 3
913,000 people. Notably, within the District of Columbia that is close to Virginia, the rate of food
insecurity is at a record 31% high (Gundersen et al.300). According to USDA, food insecurity is high
among households that have children, single parent homes, minority families, and households that
live below the 185% poverty threshold.
What is the nature of food insecurity and hunger in American families? One of the most pervasive
manifestation of food insecurity is perhaps individuals residing far from grocery stores and lack any
mode of transportation to access food. In other instances, individuals lack access to food as income
and government assistance declines as the month ends. Some individuals are at the disposal of
convenience stores and gas stations’ food, regardless of whether it is healthy or unhealthy (Schmidt et
al. 600). Families lack control of what food is physically or economically available and are forced to
consistently make unhealthy and often undesirable food choices. Household adults tend to disrupt
their food intake to allow children to access meals, and in instances when there is little food available,
children will suffer alongside adults.
According to Feeding America Map the Meal Gap, the average cost of a meal in the state is $2.68
and hence an additional $406,935,780 is required to meet the needs for food the state has. Food banks
are categorically the states’ most cost efficient and effective establishments and they make 76% of
items that pantries use, 57% of kitchens’ food, and 34% of shelters’ food (Megan n.d.). Feeding
America conducted a study Hunger in America 2010 where it was discovered that the Commonwealth
of Virginia food banks provided 42% of children, 6% of elderly, and 45% of households with one
employed adult and 6% homeless with food (Megan n.d.). Donations in the recent past have declined
by as much as 50% while there has been an increase in food requests by 40%, resulting in a crisis in
Lewei zhang 4
food banks and major support is needed to meet the needs of the state’s food (Megan n.d.).
It is crucial that all stakeholders take steps to address food insecurity. Healthcare providers, for
instance, can stay informed on food insecurity to consider social and economic barriers that may
manifest in patients when making dietary considerations (Ratcliffe 1090). Objectives and
recommendations should be tailored considering individual and/or family to guarantee a lasting
impact on individuals. Providing people with education on sources of aid within the community could
improve their well-being, despite lacking resources for ideal sources of food (Ratcliffe 1090). The
community can advocate for public policy. Food insecurity is a global problem that cannot be
overlooked and awareness, advocacy for public and government support is required.
Lunch programs across the state allow students from certain annual income households to access
free lunch from their schools. There are specific income levels for members of households that
exclude children based on these values (Ratcliffe 1090). Households in Virginia Beach City Public
Schools must have $14,521 for every household per family member to qualify for free meals.
However, the problem is that qualification standards for free lunch need to be revised (Ratcliffe et al.
1090). There are billions of dollars issued annually by the federal government to public schools. The
average amount needed to offer school lunch is $0.97 yet schools do not offer sufficient food to
students unable to afford a meal. The qualification standards should be revised up to ensure that
family making bare minimum to survive are assured of a meal in school.
Various programs have been developed in Virginia, for instance, the No Kid Hungry Campaign
that is a public-private partnership that aims to end child hunger within the commonwealth. The
campaign works by connecting eligible kids with nutrition programs. The campaign has succeeded in
Lewei zhang 5
raising awareness for kids to participate in the School Breakfast Program, Summer Meals Program,
Community Eligibility Provision, and At-Risk Afterschool Meals Program (Schmidt et al. 600). The
campaign was launched in 2011 when over 321,000 within the state were at risk of hunger and food
insecurity. Today, nearly 17% of children are facing food insecurity. As No Kid Hungry Virginia
continues to facilitate access to food programs, more is needed to ensure that food insecurity and
hunger among children is eliminated.
Figure 1. No Kid Hungry Virginia Campaign milestones.
Federal food programs like SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) provide benefits
to households with a gross income less than 130% the federal poverty and a disposable income less
than 100% the Federal poverty line (Schmidt et al. 600). However, all individuals eligible for the
program do not apply. Data provided by USDA in 2011 showed that one in every five people eligible
for the program in the state did not apply. The proportions are higher among the working poor where
a third of eligible members do not get the benefits. Some of these individuals are not aware of their
eligibility (Schmidt et al. 600). In the state, an independent, able-bodied individual living alone with a
full time job at minimum wage grosses an income that qualified him for SNAP, albeit for a certain
time, yet there is no awareness of these services. Recipients of the benefit overlap with households
Lewei zhang 6
struggling with food insecurity and hunger (Schmidt et al. 600). Considering most of the individuals
above poverty have food insecurity and hunger without getting SNAP benefits, and many above the
threshold of the program struggle to get food, there is need to revise the eligibility requirements to
include more people and create awareness about the benefits of the program.
In addition to food, education is the best way to against poverty and hunger. Laozi (Lao-tzu), the
great ancient Chinese philosopher says, “Give man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to
fish and feed him for a lifetime.” Education is very powerful in poverty countries (underdeveloped
countries). By learning, a person can get better focus on how to get out of poverty which can take the
person away form a poor situation, and can learn to be successful. World hunger needs political
leadership support laws and bills help alleviate poverty, for example, support a basic labor protection
for workers so that poor people can afford to live off their earnings, and build a health care system
that protects and helps the poverty people who are part of it. World hunger has been a constant
problem throughout the ages, there is no single solution for this problem, only by way of constant
efforts to reduce the hazard of world hunger. In the past ten years, the population of world exceeded
six billion people with most of the growth occurring in the poorest, as the result, people will face to
more severe challenges. People in developing countries cannot solve this problem by themselves and
developed countries should start thinking more of poor people in countries that are struggling. One
thing is certain which is we must do something.
Lewei zhang 7
Work Cited
Clapp, Jennifer. “World hunger and the global economy: Strong linkages, weak action.” Journal
of International Affairs67.2 (2014): 1.
Gundersen, Craig, Brent Kreider, and John Pepper. “The economics of food insecurity in the
United States.” Applied Economic Perspectives and Policy 33.3 (2011): 281-303.
Megan
Juelfs-Swanson.
“Who
is
statchatva.org/2014/12/11/hunger-in-virginia/.
hungry
in
Virginia?” StatChat,
http://statchatva.org/2014/12/11/hunger-
in-virginia/
Ratcliffe, Caroline, Signe-Mary McKernan, and Sisi Zhang. “How much does the
Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program reduce food insecurity?.” American journal of
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agricultural economics 93.4 (2011): 1082-1098.
Schmidt, Lucie, Lara Shore-Sheppard, and Tara Watson. “The Effect of Safety-Net Programs
on Food Insecurity.” Journal of Human Resources 51.3 (2016): 589-614.
“World
Hunger,
Poverty
Facts,
Statistics
2016.”
World
Hunger
www.worldhunger.org/2015-world-hunger-and-poverty-facts-and-statistics/.
News,
Lewei zhang 9
Requirements
Argument/Content (40 points):
•
Defines a localized problem and
one possible solution with vivid
detail and credible support.
•
Meets minimum page
requirement (6).
•
Includes at least 2 scholarly
sources.
•
Creates a persuasive argument,
appealing to an audience through
a variety of rhetorical strategies.
•
Includes one visual that
strengthens the claims.
Organization (25 points):
•
Constructs a well-organized
paper with a clear focus on the
problem and potential solution.
•
Includes a clear thesis statement.
•
Makes effective use of topic
sentences and transitions.
•
Carefully arranges ideas and
keeps focused on the topic.
Grammar/Mechanics (25 points):
•
Shows awareness of an academic
audience.
•
Contains minimal errors with
grammar and mechanics,
including (but not limited to)
punctuation, capitalization,
spelling, and agreement.
•
Avoids 2nd person pronouns
throughout.
•
Follows MLA formatting for
heading, spacing, internal
documentation, and Works Cited.
Score
Instructor Notes
0F
Plagiarism. I cannot give this paper
a score because I’ve found several
instances of plagiarized
information. Please set up an
appointment soon if you’d like to
discuss this grade and paper.
Lewei zhang 10
Writing Workshop (10 points):
•
Full participation in the
workshop in class
•
4 copies of a complete draft
Lewei zhang 11
Requirements
Argument/Content (40 points):
•
Defines a localized problem and
one possible solution with vivid
detail and credible support.
•
Meets minimum page
requirement (6).
•
Includes at least 2 scholarly
sources.
•
Creates a persuasive argument,
appealing to an audience through
a variety of rhetorical strategies.
•
Includes one visual that
strengthens the claims.
Organization (25 points):
•
Constructs a well-organized
paper with a clear focus on the
problem and potential solution.
•
Includes a clear thesis statement.
•
Makes effective use of topic
sentences and transitions.
•
Carefully arranges ideas and
keeps focused on the topic.
Grammar/Mechanics (25 points):
•
Shows awareness of an academic
audience.
•
Contains minimal errors with
grammar and mechanics,
including (but not limited to)
punctuation, capitalization,
spelling, and agreement.
•
Avoids 2nd person pronouns
throughout.
•
Follows MLA formatting for
heading, spacing, internal
documentation, and Works Cited.
Score
Instructor Notes
Lewei zhang 12
Writing Workshop (10 points):
•
Full participation in the
workshop in class
•
4 copies of a complete draft

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