Mid-Michigan organization works to fix food insecurity through study

Published: Sep. 13, 2022 at 5:49 PM EDT
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LANSING, Mich. (WILX) - One in seven people in the Greater Lansing area struggling to put healthy meals on the dinner table.

Solving the hunger problem is going to be a huge task -- one that won’t get done overnight.

Related: Events in Lansing held to address food insecurity

The Food Bank Council of Michigan wants to come up with a plan to feed the hungry, but first it has to get some data on just how big the problem is and which communities are impacted most.

Dr. Phil Knight is the executive director of the Food Bank Council.

“Once we understand why people are hungry, why people are struggling with food insecurity then we are going to be able to align the different programs in existence to address those needs,” Knight said. “And what we want to do is take hunger off the table so that people are free.”

The Michigan Hunger Study is the first of its kind and it will look at all 83 counties in Michigan.

Knight said good-paying jobs and affordable housing go a long way towards ending food insecurity.

“A little bit of liberty, freedom, nobody wants to come to a food bank, for food, nobody wants to be on SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program). We want to help them be free of that. And take that toxic stress that’s in their life away,” said Knight.

Rickey Horston has been both using food banks and volunteering there for more than 15 years. He said he hopes the study is the first step towards solving the problem.

“I think it’s going to contribute big time to the community because it’s like right now the price of food is so high you know people are struggling mothers and their kids,” said Horston.

The study starts in October and is expected to take two years. One year to conduct the study and one year to analyze their findings.

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