The number of people relying on food shelves for daily meals is on the rise. Hunger Solutions, a Minnesota hunger relief organization, reports one in ten Minnesotans relied on food shelves in 2009, and numbers show the number of child visits are already up 10 percent in 2010.
Food shelves are now bracing for fewer donations and greater need for children during the summer months.
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has provided $1 million in funding that will be up for grabs in forms of grants ranging from $5,000 to $50,000.
The money largely comes from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. It can be used for food, personnel costs, outreach services, and any costs associated with new programming during July, August and September.
To receive the grant, food shelves must serve children or families with children. The grant money will be used to create new nutrition programs and expand food programs specifically for children. This is important during the summer months becasue when children are out of school, they miss a mid-day meal, which is often the only meal they might get.
The grant period opened up Thursday and food shelves will know if they received the money within two weeks.
Shannon Slatton, reporting