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Food Insecurity Among Military in San Diego

“San Diego is home to the largest concentration of military personnel in California. But despite belonging to an institution with a massive budget and residing in an agriculturally rich region, a growing body of research suggests that service members and their loved ones here suffer from food insecurity.”

So begins an article that appeared in the Voice of San Diego this week regarding a growing problem in San Diego. “One in eight military families across the country meet the federal definition of food insecurity, meaning they lack access to enough food required to maintain a healthy lifestyle.”

As a Navy Chaplain, I spent a considerable number of my years trying to encourage our young junior enlisted from getting married and having children right out of boot camp. Junior enlisted in committed relationships are overconfident in their ability to navigate the difficulties of marriage and they are idealistic about marriage. This results in a divorce rate that is three times higher than their civilian peers. One of the reasons for the high divorce rate among active duty personnel is finances. Financial problems that place high stress on relationships are often the result of poor budgeting and financial mismanagement thus leading to the food insecurity problems facing these young families.

I encourage you to read the Voice of San Diego article and ask yourselves is there a role for our Episcopal Church in San Diego to respond to this need?  Our Episcopal Churches exist in particular locations and local communities throughout Southern California and Arizona.  As such we can come together and affirm to our military and veterans that we care about them. As the old proverb says, “A sorrow shared is a sorrow halved, a joy shared is a joy doubled.”

Below are organizations we can partner with and support our military families.

FOOD DISTRIBUTION

PLEASE CONFIRM WITH EACH INDIVIDUAL ORGANIZATION IF THEIR EVENT WILL BE OCCURRING OR NOT DUE TO COVID-19 HEALTH CONCERNS.

VANC 
WHAT: Food distribution is happy to be serving in our community this way. Registration is open to Active Duty, Veterans, and their families.
Register HERE
For more information, email lori@vanc.me

Courage to Call: Food Distribution Drive-Thru 
WHAT: Courage to Call and Feeding San Diego will be hosting a food distribution. It will be open to all Military Active Duty, Veterans, Guard, Reservists, and their Families.
WHEN: December 25, 2021
TIME: 10:00 AM (PST) 

RSVP: Please email couragetocall@mhsinc.org for location information for each distribution

ASYMCA 
WHAT: The Armed Services YMCA San Diego welcomes eligible military families to stock their cupboards with free, healthy, and nutritious food once per month. Through a partnership with the San Diego Food Bank, residents of 92123 or 92124 zip codes who meet federal income qualifications are invited to gather in the park at their location on Santo Road. Join each month to take home fresh produce, canned goods, and other necessities for your family to enjoy.
WHEN: December 23, 2021
TIME: 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM  
WHERE: 3293 Santo Rd, San Diego, CA 92124 

For more information, please visit @ASYSanDiego or ASYMCA.

Feeding San Diego 
WHAT: Feeding San Diego distributes more than 26 million meals a year across San Diego County in partnership with more than 300 local charities, schools, faith communities, meal sites, and food pantries. All distributions that are open to the public are listed at the link below, with possible restrictions noted.
WHERE: Find Locations
Register HERE

Jewish Family Service: Corner Market and Emergency Food Assistance 
WHAT: Hand Up operates monthly food distributions at sites across San Diego.
WHERE: Hand Up Food Pantry locations include onsite Corner Market and distribution sites at Camp Pendleton, Murphy Canyon, Chabad Downtown, Poway Senior Center, and the JFS College Avenue Center.
For more information, please visit jfssd.org/handup.

San Diego Food Bank – Food Programs Operating During the COVID-19 Crisis 
WHAT: Monthly food distributions throughout San Diego.
For more information, the Food Distribution list updates weekly!
GPS Foos Location Map HERE!
See San Diego Food Bank

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Category: #Advocacy, #Military, #Outreach

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