Food Insecurity: the state of being without reliable access to a sufficient quantity of affordable, nutritious food.

In many ways, the general population is completely oblivious to lower income families that can be affected by this nationwide epidemic.

In March of 2018, I had the opportunity to volunteer with the Atlanta Community Food Bank for a week. Within this week, we were informed on ways to fight food injustice in Atlanta in a low income area, the West End. The West End is what is known as a "food desert." 

Alexis Grace

Food Desert: an urban area in which it is difficult to buy affordable or good-quality fresh food.

In the West End, there is a tiny Walmart on Martin Luther King Drive that has produce but is not the greatest quality and very limited. That being said, families have to travel to different areas within Atlanta to get high quality produce for their families.

This can be quite difficult for a low income family that does not have the proper transportation or funds to do so. So this leaves them with the option of walking or riding public transportation, but there are other ways that you can fight food injustice  in order to help these families.  

1. Volunteer at a Local Food Bank

You can volunteer at a local food bank. The Atlanta Community Food Bank is always open for volunteers. Whether its weighing donated can goods or sorting produce, your action matters.

Alexis Grace

2. Get Involved in the Community

There are many ways you can get involved. Whether it is going to a town hall meeting or using your voice at the Georgia State Capitol. 

3. Plant at the Local Gardens

Many gardens in the West End are open to the public and based on the honor system. Often times, we take advantage of the ability to shop at more than one grocery store. Your planted seed can feed a family of four. 

pasture, grass
Jocelyn Hsu

4. Understand the role you play in the community

After everything is said and done, reflect on how good you have it and how you can make life easier for someone else. 

Food Injustice is a never ending discussion that can only be fixed with the help of the community. Spelman College Junior, Joi Stewart stated, "We shouldn't have to GET to food. We should be able to grow our own but because of water injustice, capitalistic land use placement, and hostility against community-ran social enterprises, lower income residents cannot even do what they need to eat and live healthy."

The more people are aware of the food injustice within the city of Atlanta, the faster we can build the West End back to the historic greatest that it once was. A toast to not taking things for granted and using our voices!