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Challenge: Eating in Connecticut on $3 a Day

March 5, 2010

BLOOMFIELD, Conn. - Groups working to stop hunger in Connecticut are challenging those of us who generally have plenty to eat. Foodshare is encouraging Nutmeggers to join the SNAP into Action Against Hunger Challenge in March, urging residents to try living on three dollars a day for food - the allotment per person for those receiving federal food assistance. Hunger in Connecticut has increased at least 20 percent over the past year, and Foodshare, which serves Hartford and Tolland counties, distributes 16 tons of food every business day to 350 partner programs.

Krista Ostaszewski, Foodshare's volunteer coordinator, says the agency has struggled to keep up with demand.

"The challenge is to raise awareness about the food stamp program or the SNAP program in general, and to have people experience what it's like to be hungry, and live on a tight budget.

Foodshare is feeding many more people than a year ago, says Ostaszewski, and demand on federally funded food assistance also has soared.

"Over 295,000 people in Connecticut participate in the SNAP program, which is a huge increase from last year."

Other organizations participating in the challenge include End Hunger Connecticut!, Hands on Hartford and Charter Oak Cultural Center.

Melinda Tuhus, Public News Service - CT