More than 13 million children in our country live in “food insecure” homes. These children do not have enough food to eat on a regular basis. In Arizona, this equates to 1 and 4 children who don’t know where their next meal may come from.
The heartbreaking trend of children suffering from hunger and food insecurity has continued and worsened since the end of the 2008 recession. Just how does this affect children?
Children are at a higher risk of hospitalization facing a range of health conditions including anemia and asthma. Hunger is associated with headaches, depression, anxiety, stomachaches, and inability to focus.
Children are more likely to struggle socially and behaviorally, leading to issues at school or at home. Language and motor skills can be affected, challenging their opportunity to develop successfully.
Children who don’t have access to nutritious food are likely to miss school and receive poor grades. Because of this elementary children are twice as likely to repeat a grade.