Food insecurity will get worse before it gets better, here's how you can help speed up recovery

Posted at 8:28 PM, May 05, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-05 22:36:21-04

CAPE CORAL, FLA — Economists and those who study social work, like FGCU's Thomas Felke, MSW, Ph.D. say that's the raw and honest truth when it comes to talking about the impact COVID-19 will have on wallets and stomachs in our area.

"The bad news is we don't know how bad this is going to look," said Felke.

When it comes to food, Felke says before COVID-19's impact there were already hundreds of people in southwest Florida who were food insecure, meaning they didn't know where their next meal was coming from.

And now, because of lost jobs, lost income and a slowed economy, that net is widening.

"Some economists are looking at this and saying that there could be impacts that are felt two generations beyond where we are currently," said Felke.

But with the bad, there's also some good.

"There is going to be ongoing, long-term lasting impacts from this pandemic and we need to stay together and continue to support each other in the way that our community really has done an excellent job in doing," said Felke.

Felke adds that one quick and easy way to help is to support a local food bank or organization that helps feed people.

And while giving money is great, that isn't the only way to pitch in.

"I think getting out and volunteering once it's safe to do so. I know that a lot of the organizations that are providing these services are adhering very strictly to the CDC guidelines," said Felke.

If you need help getting groceries in the house, or you want to help out at a food pantry, click here to access FGCU's COVID-19 dashboard with links to those resources and more.

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