Missed Opportunities: An Analysis of SNAP Participation in Maryland by County
SNAP is a proven tool to reduce hunger and poverty in Maryland and across the country. However, new research finds that many Marylanders who are eligible for SNAP are not participating in the program. The number of eligible people not participating in SNAP by county ranges from 25 percent in Baltimore City to over 60 percent in Montgomery County. Check out Maryland Hunger Solutions’ new research brief, Missed Opportunities: An Analysis of SNAP Participation in Maryland by County, and the accompanying map, for more information on SNAP participation by county in Maryland. Listen to the story on WAMU, too!
Government Shutdown Puts SNAP in Jeopardy
Michael J. Wilson, director of Maryland Hunger Solutions, spoke with David Greene of NPR’s Morning Edition about the potential impacts on SNAP if the shutdown continues. “Never in the history of the program have people not gotten their benefits. This is the first time that people have really been threatened about not being able to get their benefits, and not being able to eat,” says Wilson. Listen to the full conversation.
Highlights from the 2018 Fighting Hunger in Maryland Conference
On October 9, we came together in Annapolis for the 8th annual Fighting Hunger in Maryland conference, which included four award presentations, eight panels, nine roundtable discussions, 48 speakers and over 150 participants, which add up to one very successful conference! Check out highlights from the conference including presentations, pictures, and media coverage.
Significant Gains Made in Afterschool Supper Participation, but Demand for Quality Afterschool Programs Still Outstrips Supply
More than 1.2 million low-income children benefited from afterschool suppers on an average weekday in October 2017, an 11 percent increase from the previous year, according to the Food Research & Action Center’s annual Afterschool Suppers: A Snapshot of Participation report. Find out more…
Registration Open for 2019 National Anti-Hunger Conference
Registration now for the 2019 National Anti-Hunger Policy Conference, February 24-26 in Washington, D.C. The conference features two days of “can’t miss” networking opportunities, content-rich sessions, interactive training, and the National CACFP Leadership track, followed by a day on Capitol Hill. Register.
Over 12 Percent of Maryland Households Struggle to Afford Enough Food
Despite an improving economy, 12.6 percent of households in Maryland reported that they struggled to buy enough food for themselves and their families during 2016–2017, according to a new report released by the Food Research & Action Center (FRAC, a national anti-hunger advocacy group).
Maryland Lands in the Top Ten for Summer Meals Participation
Hunger Doesn’t Take a Vacation: Summer Nutrition Status Report, a new report from the Food Research & Action Center, ranks all 50 states and the District of Columbia on participation in the Summer Nutrition Programs. Maryland ranked No. 8 this year in ensuring children across the city have access to nutrition when school is out for the summer. Nearly 64,000 children received a nutritious summer meal at the 1,357 summer meals sites across the state on an average weekday in July 2017, according to the report. Many of Maryland’s summer meals sites offer enrichment or educational programming alongside meals, which helps to combat summer learning loss and reduce any stigma associated with attending a site that provides only meals.
Bills Passed to Reduce Childhood Hunger
In Maryland’s 2018 legislative session, two important bills passed that will reduce childhood hunger. SB 818 (pdf) provides additional funding to the Maryland Meals for Achievement Program, and HB 315 (pdf) ensures more low-income students can access free school meals by eliminating the reduced-price co-pay for school meals. And Maryland lawmakers did the right thing and voted down HB 1273 (pdf), a bill that would have made it more difficult for certain groups to access SNAP benefits. Read MDHS’ testimonies before the Maryland General Assembly for each of these bills.
2018 Hear the Maryland Crunch! Recap
On Thursday, March 8, 2018 at 9:15 a.m., thousands of Maryland residents participated in Hear the Maryland Crunch! Students, teachers, legislators, and community members bit into a juicy apple and joined this synchronized apple crunch event. Hear the Maryland Crunch! highlighted the importance of the School Breakfast Program in ensuring that all children get a healthy start to their day.
Equal Access to Food Assistance is Crucial in Helping Ex-Offenders Get Back on Their Feet
Check out Michael J. Wilson’s blog post on the benefits of the Maryland Equal Access to Food Act of 2017, which became law on October 1, 2017. The law gives individuals convicted of low-level, nonviolent drug felonies restored access to SNAP (formerly known as food stamps).
WIC Participation Rate in Maryland One of the Highest in the Nation
According to a report from the USDA, WIC served an estimated 63.5 percent of eligible women, infants, and young children in Maryland in 2014, compared to a 54.8 percent rate nationally. More than 141,000 low-income pregnant women, new mothers, infants, and young children in Maryland received benefits, including food, nutrition education, health care referrals, and breastfeeding support. More…
Dorchester County Joins Baltimore City and Somerset County in Offering Free School Meals to All Students
Beginning this school year, no child in Dorchester County will have to go hungry at school or be denied a meal or otherwise subject to embarrassment because he or she does not have the money to pay. Dorchester County Public Schools recently adopted the Community Eligibility Provision, which allows schools to provide breakfast and lunch to all students at no charge. More…
“We’ll take the good news where we can find it, but the challenge is, how can we continue to make progress?”
Maryland is one of 16 states that saw significant declines in food insecurity over the last three years, according to a new USDA report.
In an extensive interview with The Baltimore Sun, Maryland Hunger Solutions’ director Michael J. Wilson highlighted the state’s progress in reducing food insecurity. The change, he says, is due in part to a drop in the unemployment rate, and can also be attributed to policy changes that Maryland has made such as the increase in “hunger free schools” in the state — those that provide free breakfast and lunch to all of their students throughout the school year.
SNAP Matters to Households That Struggle Against Hunger in Communities Across Maryland
SNAP Maps, a new data tool from the Food Research & Action Center, shows SNAP household participation by state and county, and reveals participation is highest in rural areas and small towns. Check out SNAP Maps.
Maryland Groups Call on Congressional Delegation to Defend and Protect Programs That Reduce Hunger and Poverty
MDHS sent a letter, signed by more than 100 nonprofit, faith-based, and community-based organizations across the state, to the Maryland Congressional Delegation urging support of the vital federal nutrition programs in the upcoming Farm Bill. More…
Maryland Hunger Solutions Releases Report Card for School Breakfast Participation
Creating Healthier Students and Better Learners with the School Breakfast Program: Maryland’s Report Card for the 2015-2016 School Year measures Maryland’s progress in ensuring that all of the nearly 400,000 low-income students in the state have access to a nutritious school breakfast so they can start the day ready to learn. More (pdf)…
Governor Hogan Signs Hunger-Free Schools Act of 2017
Governor Larry Hogan signed The Hunger-Free Schools Act of 2017 (House Bill 287/Senate Bill 361) yesterday, which will extend the successful Community Eligibility Provision to allow more high-need schools in Maryland to provide free school breakfast and lunch to all students. More…
President’s Proposed Budget Would Greatly Increase Hunger and Poverty in Maryland
The president’s FY 2018 budget (pdf) includes an attack on the most important nutrition program for hundreds of thousands of Marylanders who live in households that have been left behind in the nation’s ongoing economic recovery. The budget proposes $193 billion in cuts to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly known as food stamps and called the Food Supplement Program in Maryland) over the next 10 years. More…
Op-ed Argues for Using Existing Solutions to Hunger and Poverty
Check out the op-ed in the Baltimore Sun by Michael J. Wilson, director of Maryland Hunger Solutions, and Benjamin Orr, executive director of the Maryland Center of Economic Policy. They respond to Gov. Hogan’s announcement of a commission, led by his lieutenant governor, to look at “Two Generation Family Security” (pdf). While the idea of a commission focused on economic security is not a bad one, families experiencing poverty shouldn’t have to keep waiting when there are existing solutions that we could implement now. More…
Registration is now open for the Fighting Hunger in Maryland Conference
Join us on October 27th for the fifth annual Fighting Hunger in Maryland Conference at the University of Maryland SMC Center in Baltimore. As the only statewide anti-hunger conference, Fighting Hunger in Maryland: Reframing Hunger is an important forum that will bring together leaders from state and local agencies, nonprofits, schools, and advocates to inform, engage, and inspire action to promote equity in food access and nutrition in Maryland. Through expert presentations, interactive workshops, and networking opportunities, Fighting Hunger in Maryland will frame challenges and develop solutions to hunger in Maryland. Topics include: Federal and State Anti-Hunger Policy and Advocacy, Funding Anti-Hunger and Food Access Work, Child Nutrition Program Innovations and Policy Implementation, Innovative Models in Program Delivery, and more. Register here…
Sign-On to Safeguard the Federal Nutrition Programs
Nearly 2,600 national, state, and community-based organizations have joined the national letter to strengthen and protect federal nutrition programs. We urge organizations in Maryland to sign on to this letter reaffirming our collective commitment to a strong and effective national nutrition safety net for vulnerable, low-income individuals and families. Please join us and sign on here!
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