Food insecurity is a much more prevalent issue with college students than one may think. At ISU, one in every four students struggles with low food security. Efforts to increase awareness and funds to feed college students have increased significantly the past few years.
The name “food insecurity” might sound much more extreme than it actually can be. Food insecurity can be the inability to access nutritious food on a consistent basis. This could mean not having a car to go to the grocery store, so you have very little food for a few days until you figure out a ride or time to take the bus. Food insecurity can also be relatively more extreme such as only eating one meal a day because that is all you can afford and obtain.
There are plentiful resources throughout the Ames community and nationwide to help feed college students. Iowa State University continues to address this issue with a team of professionals to make food more readily available to students.
- Low food security – “reports of reduced quality, variety, or desirability of diet. Little or no indication of reduced food intake” (USDA, 2019).
- Very low food security – “reports of multiple indications of disrupted eating patterns and reduced food intake” (USDA, 2019).
Campus and Community Resources
- Food at First
- Community Food pantry
- SHOP On Campus Food Pantry
- On campus food pantry in Beyer Hall
- Give A Swipe
- If you are a student that needs to access to emergency meals, you can get free meals from ISU Dining through the Give a Swipe program.
- United Way Story County
- List of Ames community food pantries and resources for basics needs like food, rent, and more.
- Food at First
- Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
- USDA National Hunger Hotline at 1-866-3-HUNGRY (English) or 1-877-8-HAMBRE (Spanish) Monday through Friday, 7:00 AM to 10:00 PM Eastern Time.
- Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC)
- Free/Reduced Lunch for Schoolchildren: National School Lunch Program, School Breakfast Program, and Summer Food Service Program
- For Seniors: Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program and Commodity Supplemental Food Program