Myths and Facts about Hunger

FACT: America is not immune; one in six of people faces hunger. (Sources: Feeding America Map the Meal Gap 2013, United States Department of Agriculture Economic Research Service)
FACT: The truth is that greater and greater numbers of working families are struggling to put food on their tables. More than one-third of households served by our network of partner programs have one or more adults working. (Source: Feeding America, Hunger in America 2010)
FACT: The opposite is true. 88% of those served by partner food assistance program are not homeless. (Source: Feeding America, Hunger in America 2010.)
FACT: More than 41% of our partner food pantries and 65% of partner soup kitchens have had to turn people away. 100% have had to reduce the quantities. (Source: Second Harvest Food Bank of Northwest NC Partner Agency Survey)
FACT: After unemployment insurance, SNAP is the most responsive federal program available to provide additional assistance during economic downturns. Enrollment expands when the economy weakens and contracts when the economy recovers. It also is an important nutritional support for low-wage working families, low-income seniors, and people with disabilities with fixed incomes. Because it is designed as a supplemental program, benefits typically do not last most participants an entire month. The average monthly SNAP benefit per person is less than $1.50 per person, per meal. States must conduct regular “quality control” reviews of SNAP case files to ensure that benefits are accurately distributed. And ongoing improvements to regulate the program have kept fraud and abuse to a historic low of less than 2%. (Source:,

Frequently Asked Questions

Through partnership between Second Harvest Food Bank of Northwest NC, a non-profit community partner agency (such as Forsyth Backpack Program), and a qualifying school having at least 50% of the student population on free or reduced lunch and 50 children in need of the program. The teachers at the school identify the children showing signs of chronic hunger and obtain permission from the parents to allow receipt of the food. The partner agency provides financial support of at least $10,000 a year for the food, storage and volunteers to deliver the food each Friday. Second Harvest orders the food at significantly reduced cost and provides administrative guidance and oversight on certain aspects.
No. We are a completely independent non-profit organization. We are proud to work with Second Harvest but we are not part of their organization.
We wear multiple hats. We serve as the partner agency for eight schools – Cook, Gibson, Union Cross, Konnoak and Middle Fork elementaries, Hanes and Jefferson middle schools and Parkland High. In addition, we provide free supplemental food for long school breaks and long weekends to schools with programs that are partnered with other community agencies. We serve as an umbrella organization to share best practices and help other programs serve their children. Check out our What We Do Page.
Child friendly, shelf-stable food consisting of 2 milks, 2 juices, 2 cereals, 2 proteins (beef stew), 2 fruit or veggie cups.
No. Backpack Programs have been established in about half the elementary schools in the Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools system meeting the qualifying standards. There are currently two middle school programs and one program in a local high school.
Sadly, no. These children are simply left out even though there is a program at their school and they would benefit from the food. It’s a matter of funding and sometimes storage space.
No!  Some schools, such as Cook Elementary, are currently feeding 90+ kids every week and Union Cross Elementary will feed 100+ kids this school year.
Some of these schools, such as Whitaker and Sherwood Forest elementaries, have weekend feeding programs run by volunteers from the PTA or surrounding community to feed these children. We can help here, too, by purchasing the backpack food on the school’s behalf from Second Harvest at a reduced price.