Hunger Myth Busters
Myth #1: "The first and most deceptive is that there is no hunger in America."
More than 50 million Americans are “food-insecure.” The U.S. Department of Agriculture defines food insecurity as “not having consistent access to adequate food sources”.
The cost of feeding a family of four is about $250 a week. A full time minimum wage employee makes about $290 per week which means 65% of these families fall well within the poverty line.
Oasis has seen a huge increase in those needing food assistance. Our pantry program has increased by 91% since 2010. In 2016, we assisted close to 10,000 people with food and became the largest distributing partner agency of the Southeast Virginia Food Bank.
Myth #2: "People are hungry because they are too lazy to work or have too many children."
Have you ever been in-between jobs? Had an unexpected health crisis? Had your car break down – again? Just had a series of bad luck incidents? Well, you’re in good company with six out of ten Americans who experienced an unexpected financial crisis over the past year. Of those 60% of Americans, approximately 63% have no emergency savings to cover these unexpected expenses according to Bankrate.com.
So, what to do? Food is one of the few flexible items in a family’s budget so often, people do without food to pay other bills - middle-class Americans unexpectedly shoved into the ranks of the poor.
This is where Oasis comes in! We serve people who are temporarily down on their luck, the working poor, children, the elderly, those with physical or mental disabilities, those suffering from substance abuse and of course our homeless neighbors
Myth #3: "All poor people get food stamps, so they don’t need our help."
Nationwide, roughly 25% of Americans eligible for federal nutrition assistance don’t sign up, according to the most recent USDA data. Many folks don’t know they are eligible, some find navigating the system too difficult and others don’t do it because of the stigma. Only 40 percent of eligible senior citizens participate. Half of all food stamps go to children.
Myth #4: "Oasis doesn’t need my money, they get city and state funding."
Oasis receives very little funding from the city or state. And that which is received is through applying for grants or other income source applications. In fact, as the below graphic shows, the largest percentage of our funding comes from individuals like yourself. It takes close to $35,000 per month to keep the doors at Oasis open. Many months we barely make it through and often must cut back on services to keep the doors open at all. YOU CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE!
Myth #5: "There is nothing we can do to help the hungry."
It all started over 45 years ago with a few parishioners from St. Paul’s Catholic Church handing out peanut butter sandwiches. Just a few people who wanted to make a difference. This year alone, more than 1,600 people gave 18,000 hours of their time to make a difference. Regular folks – people just like yourselves. And boy, did they make a difference. Check out the 2017 Accomplishments page on this site for more information!
Can you make a difference in the life of someone less fortunate? Yes! There’s plenty you can do: volunteer your time and talent; collect food, donate clothing, provide financial support. A large pot of soup to feed 150 people costs $300. That means that just $20 feeds 10 people a nourishing meal. Come visit or call us and see how you can help. Not only will it help change the life of those you help, we guarantee it will also change yours.