So many of us take for granted that getting fresh, healthy food is just a short trip to the supermarket away. Well, for 23 million Americans, this is just simply not the case.
Food deserts are geographical areas where more than 500 people live without access to fresh, healthy foods. They can exist in both rural and urban areas and often people living in them need to rely on convenience stores and fast-food restaurants to get their food.
When we think of this and the fact that around 2.5 million people living in these food deserts are low-income and do not own a car, it becomes clear that this issue needs attention. The concentration of fast-food restaurants in low-income food deserts have lead many to believe that these could be a source of the obesity epidemic in the country. Here are some facts:
Death rates from diabetes are double in low income food deserts
People living in low-income food deserts are 2.5 times more exposed to fast-food restaurants.
Government initiative to open 1,500 supermarkets in food deserts has been slowed by large supermarket chains.
Since 2011 only 250 supermarkets opened in food deserts across the country
Large retailers are hesitant to open these stores because they are worried they won’t make enough money to stay open.
Can we allow this to happen? Can we continue to deny men, women and children of this country quality food just because the numbers don’t make sense? These are people that deserve to eat healthy just like anyone else and certainly don’t deserve to have low-quality, unhealthy fast food presented to them as the only option.
To combat this, Coupla Guys and Gals Give Back is working to make sure these food deserts cease to exist. By helping to set up community gardens and working to provide education about nutrition, C3GB is providing people in these communities with the resources they need to be able to provide healthy meals for themselves and their families. This doesn’t just mean delivering food, though. We are working to help make these communities more self-sustainable by raising awareness and looking for ways to create local jobs.
Work in these communities is especially focused on children. Having access to proper nutrition in the early years of life is essential for proper development.
Coupla Guys and Gals partners with several organizations to help these people get access to one of life’s basic resources: fresh, healthy food.