Hungry much? - Page 2

California faces severe food aid gap in time of need

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Elizabeth Kneebone, a senior research associate at the Brookings Institution, also said the changing face of poverty now increasingly includes the suburbs as well as inner-city neighborhoods. In California, inland cities such as Riverside and Fresno have seen rapid spikes in suburban poverty, she said, sometimes double the levels in urban areas. (In a report published this month, Kneebone also determined that Fresno ranked fifth nationally for neighborhoods with extreme poverty.)

Despite this grim news, California is making some strides towards helping those in need.

In October, for example, Gov. Jerry Brown signed into law several bills that eliminated obstacles to CalFresh enrollment. Assembly Bill 6, for example, ended California's unusual requirement that mandated that everyone 18 and over in a household receiving CalFresh be finger printed. New laws have also ended a rule requiring CalFresh participants to file quarterly reports. Instead, California will switch to simplified semi-annual, or roughly twice a year reporting, beginning in 2013.

But there are still challenges and threats ahead.

"The recession has erased a lot of the social gains made during the 1990s, so it will take a number of years to make that up," said Caroline Danielson of the Public Policy Institute of California in Oakland. She also points to a need for smarter policies such as placing jobs closer to communities and public transit.

There is also concern that the current deficit reduction talks at the federal level could also add to the burden on households, increasing their need for supplemental help.

"The [deficit reduction talks] could reduce support for low-income families," Stanford's Wimer said. While the food stamp program may not be target, he added, related services such as a women and child component known as WIC could be on the chopping block.

"We'll have to see how it plays out," added CFPA's Sharp. "But right now there is extreme pressure on households and they are struggling to find adequate resources. It is certainly not unreasonable to try to close that 50 percent [CalFresh] gap."

This story was funded by a grant from the Sierra Health Foundation to do independent reporting on the topic of food access in California.

Comments

New Urban Garden Concept

Two Books are necessary to make neighborhood gardening take off...

1. Food Not Lawns -Heather C. Flores

2. Square Foot Gardening -Mel Bartholomew

My suggestion is to create a non-profit organization that will install gardens

based on a few easy and affordable backyard design templates in urban

and suburban areas. The goals of this effort are-

1. To make urban gardens easy and cheap by streamlining the garden

designs into a few backyard design pattern templates that the "customer"

could choose from. The design patterns would incorporate both square foot

gardening concepts and some basic composting and water usage

concepts from the "Food Not Lawns"

2. Network all recipients and hosts of these new urban food gardens via a

website. The website allows (requires) individuals to list the produce they

will be growing this season, and the gives individuals the option to trade

one kind of produce for another by requesting via internet. Website is also

divided into neighborhoods and allows posting for neighborhood daily, or

weekly potluck events. Website also hosts practical gardening tips and

food recipes.

That's the idea in a nutshell. Design about 4-5 backyard garden design

templates that are workable in urban environments, find backyard hosts

that are willing to donate for cost of installation or have a charitable organizations who will make the donation. Make things cheap and affordable for all, and allow people to trade produce and schedule potlucks.

This helps move towards a more inclusive community, and more importantly it helps bridge the food gap in a way that is healthy and sustainable. It would also cut down on traffic and possibly other problems because people would no longer be required to go to soup kitchens or far-away grocery stores, and could instead stay in their own neighborhoods and be more self-sustainable. I think this idea could take off with minimal resources for the amount of return to the city. This is a big idea. It just dropped into my head one day.

My name is Zach.

I can do my best to facilitate conversations between non-profits and others

who might be interested in this idea and investors who might be interested

in donating to this idea and vice a versa. I am just a student, but this idea

needs to happen and this was underscored for me today when I picked up

the most recent copy of the Guardian, The Great Food Divide.

It is my personal opinion that this idea can help evade famine in America.

So, while some among us might be tempted to allow big corporations to

continue to dominant the food supply and play our violins as we allow

apocalyptic self-fulfilling prophecies of famine and pestilence to starve us

all... I think there is a better way.

It is not just for the wealthy. It is affordable. It is efficient. It is empowering.

But most importantly it is human.

Peace.

Please contact me at

(415)361-6915
or zacharykirksmainemail@yahoo.com

Posted by Zach on Nov. 30, 2011 @ 11:49 am

New Urban Garden Concept

Two Books are necessary to make neighborhood gardening take off...

1. Food Not Lawns -Heather C. Flores

2. Square Foot Gardening -Mel Bartholomew

My suggestion is to create a non-profit organization that will install gardens

based on a few easy and affordable backyard design templates in urban

and suburban areas. The goals of this effort are-

1. To make urban gardens easy and cheap by streamlining the garden

designs into a few backyard design pattern templates that the "customer"

could choose from. The design patterns would incorporate both square foot

gardening concepts and some basic composting and water usage

concepts from the "Food Not Lawns"

2. Network all recipients and hosts of these new urban food gardens via a

website. The website allows (requires) individuals to list the produce they

will be growing this season, and the gives individuals the option to trade

one kind of produce for another by requesting via internet. Website is also

divided into neighborhoods and allows posting for neighborhood daily, or

weekly potluck events. Website also hosts practical gardening tips and

food recipes.

That's the idea in a nutshell. Design about 4-5 backyard garden design

templates that are workable in urban environments, find backyard hosts

that are willing to donate for cost of installation or have a charitable organizations who will make the donation. Make things cheap and affordable for all, and allow people to trade produce and schedule potlucks.

This helps move towards a more inclusive community, and more importantly it helps bridge the food gap in a way that is healthy and sustainable. It would also cut down on traffic and possibly other problems because people would no longer be required to go to soup kitchens or far-away grocery stores, and could instead stay in their own neighborhoods and be more self-sustainable. I think this idea could take off with minimal resources for the amount of return to the city. This is a big idea. It just dropped into my head one day.

My name is Zach.

I can do my best to facilitate conversations between non-profits and others

who might be interested in this idea and investors who might be interested

in donating to this idea and vice a versa. I am just a student, but this idea

needs to happen and this was underscored for me today when I picked up

the most recent copy of the Guardian, The Great Food Divide.

It is my personal opinion that this idea can help evade famine in America.

So, while some among us might be tempted to allow big corporations to

continue to dominant the food supply and play our violins as we allow

apocolyptic self-fulfilling prophecies of famine and pestilence to starve us

all...There is a better way.

It is not just for the wealthy. It is affordable. It is efficient. It is empowering.

But most importantly it is human.

Peace.

Please contact me at

(415)361-6915
or zacharykirksmainemail@yahoo.com

Posted by Zach on Nov. 30, 2011 @ 11:49 am

New Urban Garden Concept

Two Books are necessary to make neighborhood gardening take off...

1. Food Not Lawns -Heather C. Flores

2. Square Foot Gardening -Mel Bartholomew

My suggestion is to create a non-profit organization that will install gardens

based on a few easy and affordable backyard design templates in urban

and suburban areas. The goals of this effort are-

1. To make urban gardens easy and cheap by streamlining the garden

designs into a few backyard design pattern templates that the "customer"

could choose from. The design patterns would incorporate both square foot

gardening concepts and some basic composting and water usage

concepts from the "Food Not Lawns"

2. Network all recipients and hosts of these new urban food gardens via a

website. The website allows (requires) individuals to list the produce they

will be growing this season, and the gives individuals the option to trade

one kind of produce for another by requesting via internet. Website is also

divided into neighborhoods and allows posting for neighborhood daily, or

weekly potluck events. Website also hosts practical gardening tips and

food recipes.

That's the idea in a nutshell. Design about 4-5 backyard garden design

templates that are workable in urban environments, find backyard hosts

that are willing to donate for cost of installation or have a charitable organizations who will make the donation. Make things cheap and affordable for all, and allow people to trade produce and schedule potlucks.

This helps move towards a more inclusive community, and more importantly it helps bridge the food gap in a way that is healthy and sustainable. It would also cut down on traffic and possibly other problems because people would no longer be required to go to soup kitchens or far-away grocery stores, and could instead stay in their own neighborhoods and be more self-sustainable. I think this idea could take off with minimal resources for the amount of return to the city. This is a big idea. It just dropped into my head one day.

My name is Zach.

I can do my best to facilitate conversations between non-profits and others

who might be interested in this idea and investors who might be interested

in donating to this idea and vice a versa. I am just a student, but this idea

needs to happen and this was underscored for me today when I picked up

the most recent copy of the Guardian, The Great Food Divide.

It is my personal opinion that this idea can help evade famine in America.

So, while some among us might be tempted to allow big corporations to

continue to dominant the food supply and play our violins as we allow

apocolyptic self-fulfilling prophecies of famine and pestilence to starve us

all...There is a better way.

It is not just for the wealthy. It is affordable. It is efficient. It is empowering.

But most importantly it is human.

Peace.

Please contact me at

(415)361-6915
or zacharykirksmainemail@yahoo.com

Posted by Zach on Nov. 30, 2011 @ 11:50 am

One of the reasons so few California college students receive SNAP benefits is because they are required to have a job that gives them at least 20 hours each week. They are not eligible in any month when their weekly work hours do not total at least 20 hours each and every week. Do you have any idea how hard it is for college students to keep their grades up on a standard 12 unit semester while working 20 hours each and every week? Most college students can't find part-time jobs that will guarantee them 20 hours per week, period.

Many students are going to college in the first place because they were unable to find jobs. I know this because my 26 year-old son, and his 22 year-old girlfriend are two of them. I am disabled, have three college students living in my home (because they can't afford to live anywhere else and have nowhere else to go) and can only get SNAP for myself, $190 per month.

The number of units represents (in most cases) the number of hours per week spent in class. Colleges tell students to plan to study at least three hours outside of class for every hour in class. That alone is 48 hours per week. Add 20 hours per week for work and you end up with a 68 hour work week, not including any commute time. Add commute times, regular daily activities like bathing, eating and exercise and these students have each and every day filled from the moment they get up in the morning to the moment they fall into their beds at night, exhausted. And so, most of them just go without, eating 25 cent blocks of ramen noodles three meals per day, every day, for weeks on end so they have some time to socialize and let off some steam. Needless to say I suppose, but that's not the kind of nutrition that a young person needs to continue their studies and remain healthy. Something needs to change regarding college students and SNAP.

Posted by Calichef on Dec. 02, 2011 @ 7:28 pm

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