Hunger Can, And Does, Happen Here.Annually, the Maryland Food Bank distributes over 37 million meals - but Marylanders miss more than 100 million. Help us do more. Give Now
Maryland is home to 665,420 people, including 205,890 children, who don’t always know where their next meal is coming from.
Despite being one of the wealthiest states in the nation, Maryland’s communities are deeply impacted by food insecurity. People from all walks of life find themselves in need of food assistance from time to time, for a variety of reasons.
Hunger and Children
Food insecurity can have lasting effects on children and impact their ability to succeed in school and other activities. Studies have shown children who suffer from food insecurity have also reported they’d had trouble concentrating in school, had less energy for social interactions, experienced anxiety or depression and had more absences from school than other children.
Hunger and Seniors
Marylanders should not have to face food-insecurity in their senior years due to circumstances like inconsistent income, limited mobility, and poor health. Studies show that food-insecure seniors have an increased risk of poor health, struggle to manage health issues, and are likely to have higher health care costs.
Hunger and Working Families
With today’s stagnant wages and the steadily rising cost of living, some individuals are working full time but still struggling to put food on the table. In fact, nearly 40 percent of food-insecure individuals in our service area earn too much to qualify for federal or state relief. This means that thousands of food-insecure Marylanders rely on the food bank and other forms of food assistance as they struggle to meet their basic needs.
17.5% Less Achievement
Kids without access to breakfast score 17.5 percent less on standardized math tests – the difference between an A and a C+ (source)
Maryland and the meal gap
- Food insecurity exists in every congressional district in the entire U.S., even right here in Maryland.
- The state has 665,420 individuals who are food insecure, more than 1 in every 9 people.
- Marylanders miss over 100 million meals each year.
- The overall estimated cost to meet the food needs of all food-insecure Marylanders was more than $350 million, at an estimated cost of $3.10 per meal in 2016.
- The Maryland Food Bank’s purchasing power stretches each dollar donated to up to 3 meals.
Mapping the Meal Gap
The Food First Grant Program is designed to expand partner capacity, strengthening our network. The grant money will be used for a variety of capacity-building projects aimed at increasing the amount of food partners distribute, expanding their service hours, transporting and handling perishable foods, and providing additional services to help clients address the root causes of hunger.
Facing Hunger in Maryland means different things to different people. For some, it’s dealing with the uncertainty of not knowing where their next meal will come from; for others, it’s trying to help their hungry neighbors in need. Then there are people like Dorothy Wilson, who has experienced both sides of facing hunger in Maryland.