Houston Competition
Aetna Voices of Health Competition

Target Hunger


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Target Hunger

Target Hunger is a 501c (3) nonprofit organization that alleviates hunger and addresses its root causes in the northeast Houston neighborhoods we serve. Our vision is to create a community where nobody goes hungry, and individuals are able to provide food for themselves and their families. A United Way Agency, Target Hunger is one of Houston's largest organizations providing food to hungry seniors, children and families and is one of the Houston Food Bank's largest food distributors of more than 1,500 service providers throughout southeast Texas. Between 2017 - 20018, the organization distributed nearly ten million pounds of food to more than 77,000 individuals, many of whom were continuing to recover from the devastation caused by Hurricane Harvey. Target Hunger's programs and services aim to address hunger and food insecurity within inner city neighborhoods across Houston's northeast triangle - an area where more than 30% of people live below the federal poverty line (U.S. Census Bureau).

Target Hunger's food distribution system includes: 1). 6 food pantries serving individuals and families residing in zip code areas 77016, 77020, 77026, 77028 and 77078, 2). a 2-acre, 60-bed community garden that provides an enriching, hands-on way to combat food insecurity while underscoring the significance of sustainable practices, 3). programming for seniors, which provides monthly supplemental food assistance to approximately 700 seniors who reside in our primary service area and live on fixed, low-incomes, 4). community/educational food fairs, which provide families with all fresh produce and do not have eligibility guidelines and 5). Disaster Relief and Recovery services, which help ensure that community residents have access to food, water, household cleaning supplies and other critical resources during times of natural disaster.

The supplemental food assistance that is provided by Target Hunger assists individuals and families to stretch their budgets and avoid having to make the difficult choice between buying food and paying for other basic needs, such as housing, prescription medication, utilities and home repair. Serving thousands of hungry individuals and families each year, we are on the front lines of hunger every day.

In 1983, Representative Mickey Leland, and two other state representatives from New York and Ohio formed the House Select Committee on Hunger to find sustainable solutions to national and international hunger and poverty. Following a hearing in Houston in 1986, the United Way and a host of community leaders identified areas in Houston where the needs of the hungry were not being met. As a result, Target Hunger was founded in 1989 to address hunger in the Fifth Ward. The organization has grown to include the northeast neighborhoods of Kashmere Gardens, North Forest and Denver Harbor and to serve an expanded area that includes approximately 100 zip codes.

While all five zip code areas in Target Hunger's primary distribution area have been identified as one of Houston's fifteen poorest zip codes, out of 178 that make up the city, Target Hunger serves a very resilient population of seniors, children and families that, by and large, would not seek assistance from unless there was a genuine need. The majority of the people we serve either have very little control over their access to affordable, nutritious, high quality food or have experienced a major life event that has caused financial challenges.

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Target Hunger