Are there really hungry people in Australia?
Yes there are. Hunger is a hidden crisis in Australia, with over 2 million people seeking food relief at some point every year, half of which are children. In fact, the demand for food relief is rising, irrespective of national economic growth.
It is also a common misconception that only homeless people require food relief. However, the main recipients of food relief are individuals and families who have generally low incomes or are unemployed, not just those who are homeless. The face of hunger in Australia is diverse – it affects males, females, children, the elderly, single people and families, students, employed, unemployed and retired people. High risk groups include people with disabilities, refugees and Indigenous Australians.
Some of the common reasons why people find themselves seeking food relief include a lack of funds to pay rent and bills, and unexpected expenses such as car repairs or medical bills.
Here are the facts on hunger in Australia:
1 in 6
people report having experienced food insecurity in the last year
people seek food relief each year
people receive food relief from Foodbank agencies, every month
of those are children (216,000)
The demand for food relief is rising, irrespective of national economic growth. According to the Foodbank Hunger Report 2016, last year saw an increase of 8% in the number of people seeking food relief.
Some useful references: