The organization previously called the Kentucky Association of Food Banks has a new name and it’s pledging to continue initiatives to alleviate food insecurity. But even with the continuing support of many state leaders, the initiatives aren't making much of a dent in the state’s problem with hunger.
In Kentucky, one-in-six people is food insecure. That’s a number the organization with the new name ‘Feeding Kentucky’ is determined to whittle down.
Executive Director Tamara Sandberg said many families and individuals aren’t sure where their next meal is coming from.
“It’s tempting to get discouraged, frankly. It’s such a stubborn problem," said Sandberg. "But we believe that there is a solution to hunger, there are multiple solutions to hunger. And it’s going to take all of us coming together. It’s not that we don’t have enough food. It’s that we’re not getting the food to the people who need it.”
Last year Feeding Kentucky distributed 77 million pounds of food. The organization continues to expand its Farms to Food Banks program that involves buying produce from farmers that’s slightly imperfect and distributing it to communities across the state.
At the State Capitol this week, the new name Feeding Kentucky was announced at the group's annual rally to bring awareness to hunger.
"We’re excited about this name because we feel like it does a better job describing our true intent, " said Executive Director Tamara Sandberg. "We partner with more than just food banks. We partner with farmers and elected officials and retailers. So Feeding Kentucky really encompasses more of what we aim to do -make sure every Kentuckian has enough food to eat.”
Sandberg said the fact that one-in-six Kentuckians is food insecure remains a stubborn and troubling statistic. But she said she is encouraged by several state officials at the rally who announced their support for continuing initiatives to alleviate hunger.
Those initiatives include the ‘Farms to Food Banks’ program that buys slightly imperfect produce from farmers that’s not purchased by grocery stores, and the legal community’s ‘Food Frenzy Campaign’ that’s helped bring more than 800,000 meals to Kentucky families.