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Sep-09-2009 01:35printcomments

Hunger Action Month: Empty Cupboards Spreading Through Oregon (AUDIO)

Hunger affects one in five Oregonians, and one in eight Americans nationwide.

homeless man in Downtown LA
Problems in Oregon are slightly less severe than they are on the national level. This photo shows a homeless man in Downtown LA. photo by Bonnie King

( PORTLAND, Ore.) - The report from the front lines in Oregon is that the economy is taking a bite out of family dinners. September is Hunger Action Month, and Sharon Hills, executive director of the St. Vincent de Paul Food Recovery Network, says this year's designation comes as requests for emergency food boxes are at record highs.

"The increase has been at least 40 percent in families requesting food. Of those families, between 40 and 50 percent are children."

Hunger Action Month is a time to educate the public on the difficulties faced by families on limited food budgets, according to Hills. The initiative also encourages citizens, community groups and businesses to make donations of food, time or money through the network's "Give a Little, Feed a Lot" campaign.

Most people's budgets are tight, Hills acknowledges, but a little generosity goes a long way in providing emergency food.

"We can make that dollar stretch. We're able to acquire 13 pounds of food for every dollar donated, which really comes out to be about five or six meals."

Hunger affects one in five Oregonians, and one in eight Americans nationwide, she adds.

More information about the "Give a Little, Feed a Lot" campaign is available at


Special thanks to Oregon News Service
Producer: Deb Courson
Reporter: Deborah Smith

Click the play button below for the audio report:


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