The Facts: Hunger in Colorado

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Read facts about hunger and poverty in Colorado, and find out how we define terms like hunger.

 

HUNGER & POVERTY IN COLORADO…

 

  • Nearly 1 in 7 Coloradans struggled with hunger in 2013, facing times when there was not enough money to buy food for their families or themselves.
    (USDA, Household Food Security in the United States in 2013, September 2014)
  • More than 1 in 8 Coloradans lived in poverty, including 1 in 6 kids, during 2013.
    (U.S. Census Bureau, American Community Survey: Poverty in 2012 and 2013, September 2014)
  • More than 1 in 5 Colorado households with children (22%) reported food hardship, facing financial challenges to put food on the table.
    (Food Research and Action Center, Food Hardship 2008-2012: Geography and Household Composition, September 2013)
  • More than 1 in 4 working families in Colorado do not have enough food to meet their basic needs.
    (Census Bureau, American Community Survey 2011, September 2012)
  • Nearly 1 in 7 Colorado seniors have been unsure of when or where they would get their next meal.
    (James Ziliak and Craig Gunderson, The State of Senior Hunger in America 2012: An Annual Report, Prepared for the National Foundation to End Senior Hunger, May 2014)
  • Colorado has the third-fastest growing rate of child poverty in the nation, with more kids living in poverty during 2012 than the worst of the Great Recession.
    (Colorado Children’s Campaign, 2014 KIDS COUNT in Colorado!, March 2014)
  • Among all Colorado children, those under the age of 6 are most likely to be in poverty, with 1 in 5 living in poverty during 2012. They also are most at risk of living in homes without enough food.
    (Colorado Children’s Campaign, 2014 KIDS COUNT Colorado!, March 2014; Colorado Children’s Campaign, 2011 KIDS COUNT Colorado!, 2011)

  • About 23,500 veterans in Colorado live in households that participated in food stamps at some point during the past 12 months.
    (Center of Budget Policies and Priorities, SNAP Helps Roughly 1.7 Million Struggling Veterans, November 2014)
  • A Coloradan, on average, only receives $1.38 per meal or $4.14 per day in food stamp benefits, making it a challenge to put healthy food on the table for themselves and their family.
    (Based on USDA Food and Nutrition Service data: average SNAP benefits in Colorado during FY2013, with November 2013 benefit reduction included)
  • Compared to other state participation rates, Colorado ranks 25th in school breakfast participationi and 48th in SNAP/food stamps participationii.
    (i Food Research and Action Center, School Breakfast Scorecard, January 2014; ii U.S. Department of Agriculture, Program Access Index 2012, February 2014)
  • While Coloradan participation has improved, statewide numbers still remain low in major nutrition assistance programs.

    • SNAP/food stamps 55%i
    • School Breakfast Program 46% ii  
    • Summer Food Service Program (for children) 13% iii
      (i U.S. Department of Agriculture, Program Access Index 2012, February 2014; ii Hunger Free Colorado estimate based on Colorado Department of Education data;iii
      Hunger Free Colorado, 2012 Colorado Summer Nutrition Report, 2013)

 

IN THE UNITED STATES…

 

  • More than 1 in 7 Americans live in poverty and struggle with hunger. That’s more than 45 million people.
    (U.S. Department of Agriculture, Household Food Security in the United States in 2013, September 2014; Census Bureau, Income and Poverty in the United States: 2013, September 2014)
  • More than 1 in 5 children live in poverty and face times when they may not know when or where they will get their next meal. That’s nearly 15 million kids under the age of 18.
    (U.S. Department of Agriculture, Household Food Security in the United States in 2013, September 2014; Census Bureau, Income and Poverty in the United States: 2013, September 2014)
  • It’s estimated that food stamps lifted 3.7 million people above the federal poverty line in 2013, including 1.5 million children.
    (Census Bureau, September 2014)

 

 What Can You Do?

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