SAN DIEGO COUNTY, Calif. — One in four people in San Diego County experiences nutrition insecurity, meaning they do not have consistent access to nutritious food. Of the population facing nutrition insecurity, nearly one in three are children.
That’s why CBS 8, PNC Bank, Sycuan, and SDG&E are working with the San Diego Food Bank again this summer with the School’s Out; Hunger’s Not - Summer Food Drive.
From July 21 until August 20, 2023, stop by any of the 72 local Albertsons or Vons and make a non-perishable food donation in the famous red food drive barrels located in the front of the stores or visit the San Diego Food Bank to make an online monetary donation where every $1 donated provides two meals.
A family who uses the food bank says they drive from Lemon Grove to Vista to receive groceries from the pantry.
"I try not to attend as much as possible and stretch it out. But when it gets to a point, it's like, I know where to go, you know, and this is the spot; it's beautiful. As long as they keep getting the people that supply, that donate to this situation," said Steven Garcia.
Tens of thousands of children living in poverty in San Diego County rely on free school meals Monday through Friday during the school year, but during summer vacation, children living in poverty stop receiving free meals at school and face hunger at home. Often their parents work in low-wage jobs, and over the summer months, these families are forced to turn to the San Diego Food Bank and our North County Food Bank chapter for food assistance to feed their children. At the same time, donations to the San Diego Food Bank and North County Food Bank drop over the summer when the need from the community is greatest.
Last year, the Food Bank distributed 44 million pounds of food to local families and served 400,000 people monthly in San Diego County.
San Diego State University, in partnership with the San Diego Food Bank, released a survey in July 2023 that provides new demographic and socioeconomic data profiling the Food Bank’s client population.
Some key findings from the July report include:
- Respondents reported that the San Diego Food Bank resources make up an average of 42% of their household food supply.
- Over half (53%) of residents in North County household food is made up by the Food Bank, which is larger than the overall average of 42%.
- North County respondents have an average income of $16,336, approximately $8,000 less than the average income of $24,433, and a median income of $7,000 less than the overall median of $21,000. South Bay incomes are almost $3,000 more than the average income and a median income of $2,000 more than the overall median.
- The median household income of families receiving food assistance from the San Diego Food Bank is $21,000, and the average household income is $24,433.
- Most respondents (57%) have used the Food Bank for less than one year.
- Almost three-quarters (72%) of respondents attend monthly food distribution from the SDFB.
WATCH RECAP: Nourishing Neighbors Summer 2022 Food Drive: