In the midst of unbridled economic growth and opportunities across the great state of Texas, there are still people who go hungry in 2015.
As difficult as it may be to stomach, a staggering one in five Texas households – 18.4 percent – experience food insecurity, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, making it the second highest state in terms of the number of food insecure households. Food insecurity means that a household does not have consistent access to adequate food, due to their limited financial means, transportation or other resources.
UnitedHealthcare Texas recently joined hands with Hunger Free Texans in an effort to address this problem, sponsoring the organization’s annual conference in Houston in April.
Hunger Free Texans is a nonprofit health and wellness organization whose mission is keeping members of the public well by reducing hunger and increasing health and nutrition in Texas through collective impact and education. The organization provides free educational conferences for nonprofits, public sector organizations and others on topics, providing knowledge from experts in the areas of food, nutrition, health/wellness and healthy communities.
“Everything stems from food and diet,” noted Hunger Free Texans President Aaron Herrera during an interview with KPRC television in Houston.
Since convening its first conference just three years ago, Hunger Free Texans has equipped more than 1,300 organizations around Texas with the knowledge they need to address the state’s hunger problem.
In April, more than 150 leaders from food, nutrition, health and wellness organizations across the state participated in a number of breakout educational sessions, including:
- Using healthy food to manage heart disease and chronic illnesses
- Nutrition for people working with children and families
- Healthy foods in schools
- Managing the diets of senior citizens
- Eating organic
- Food’s role in stress reduction.
Though the Hunger Free Texans was initially focused on food access, it has since expanded its focus to include nutrition and health – areas that are of particular interest to UnitedHealthcare, whose mission is helping people live healthier lives and helping make the health system work better for everyone.
To learn more about Hunger Free Texans, visit www.hungerfreetexans.org.