If you have any connection to your local school district, you are probably aware of the services that are provided in your school community. Districts are a mini hub within a larger community and their major goal is to provide the most support for their students. There are numerous programs that cover academic support and advancement, mental/emotional needs, and even physical needs. One program that is vital to the students is access to food. Looking at this map, we can see where in the United States children are most dependent on free school lunches. Without this basic need being met, it has been proven that student academic success drops, which in turn pours over into the overall success of the individual. Access to free lunch during the school day provides stability to those who might not otherwise have it. Most communities will also have this program in the summer months along with other school breaks so there is no worry on the student's part. More than half the country has 40% of students or more that are eligible for free lunches.
While this is an ongoing issue, there has been more awareness and food access brought into the most affected areas. A hope for the future is that as a country we continue to support these communities in need and find new and creative ways to support families with their food insecurity.
Infographic by: aaastateofplay