BRIDGE BUILDERS: MANNA FoodBank Executive Director Cindy Threlkeld, left, and Volunteer Coordinator Max Gruber, right, are working to alleviate food insecurity in WNC. Photo by Alicia Funderburk

The widening gap

Newly released data pulled from Feeding America’s 2012 Map the Meal Gap study shows a 2 percent increase in food insecurity in Western North Carolina. In that year, the study found, 15.3 percent of the region’s people lacked consistent access to enough food to meet their nutritional needs, up from 14.9 percent in 2011.

Love in a Parking Lot: How Oakley grew a farmers market-attachment0

Love in a Parking Lot: How Oakley grew a farmers market

A celebration of locally grown food and neighborhood relationships, the Oakley Farmers Market and the adjacent Oakley Community Garden are giving a much-needed boost to a predominantly low-wealth community that the U.S. Department of Agriculture considers a food desert. But what brought them all together was as simple as a sign.

For the children: A group of volunteers fills bag with food as part of MANNA FoodBank’s Packs for Kids program. Megan Dombroski

Food on the table

As Asheville’s rates of hunger increase, local agencies are trying to keep pace. Standing in MANNA FoodBank’s warehouse holding a small bag of groceries, Beth Stahl, the nonprofit’s youth program coordinator, reflects on the value of food to the many Buncombe County children facing crippling hunger. “It’s kind of scary that this little bag of […]