154,205 Seniors and Older Kentuckians face food insecurity, new study shows
Feeding America, Kentucky’s Heartland receives funding to expand assistance
June 1, 2023 – The latest “State of Senior Hunger” data from Feeding America shows Kentucky has the fourth highest rate of food insecurity among adults aged 50 to 59 in the nation. Only Arkansas, Delaware and Oklahoma were found to have higher rates.
The study found that 6.9 percent of Kentucky seniors and 14.6 percent of older adults lacked regular access to enough food or had to make trade offs between food and other basic needs, such as medicine or housing. Kentucky also ranked seventh in the nation for seniors with very low food security, meaning these seniors are on the cusp of food insecurity.
Other key findings of the study include:
- For seniors and aging adults, food insecurity makes them more likely to develop chronic health conditions, such as depression and limitations in daily ability.
- Seniors and older adults sharing a home with a grandchild are more likely to experience food insecurity at higher rates.
- More than 7 million seniors are projected to be food insecure by 2050.
“This generation of Kentuckians spent most of their lives contributing to our communities and serving others, so it is only fitting that we support them as they age,” said Jamie Sizemore, FAKH executive director.
Feeding America, Kentucky’s Heartland (FAKH) recently received a grant of $150,000 from Feeding America® which will allow FAKH to expand resources to older adults and seniors over the next two years. The grant funding will help to provide nutritious food resources to individuals 50 and older in select rural communities throughout FAKH’s 42 county service area.
“Many older adults and seniors are making strides to live healthy and active lifestyles,” said Sizemore. “Our network recognizes their goals and we are constantly working to eliminate barriers, such as lack of transportation or perceived stigma, which prevent seniors and older adults from getting the nutritious food resources that they need.”
To support FAKH and local neighbors facing hunger, consider making a financial donation at www.feedingamericaky.org, donate your time by volunteering, or advocate for more federal and state assistance.