Angel Blog

The Demand for Food Support Continues to Increase

Did you know that our San Antonio and Atlanta Military & Veteran Food Distributions fill to capacity in about 5 to 10 minutes every month with Veterans and Service Members who need food support? That’s right. Within minutes of launching the sign-up, all registered spots and waitlist spots are taken. In Orlando, where the event is growing rapidly, the list and waitlist reach capacity in about 30 minutes.

Think about how crazy that is. The need for food support in these locations (and others) goes far beyond the 200-250 slots we have available each month. We know it’s a major frustration for the Veterans and Service Members who need it, but unfortunately, we can only serve as many people as we have food for.

Military food insecurity stats

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs conducts routine screenings to identify Veterans at risk of food insecurity and refer them to sources of support. According to a 2023 study conducted by Rand, 7.5% of America’s roughly 18 million veterans – nearly 1.4 million – don’t have enough food, but less than 5% are enrolled in the federal government’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).

The issue goes beyond the Veteran population and into the Active Duty Service Member population – who face food insecurity at almost double the rate of the national average. According to the U.S. Census and a 2021 Texas Public Radio report 20% of active-duty respondents indicated that they experienced food insecurity, and more than 10% experienced hunger. This is why last year, we opened up our Food Distributions to Active Duty Service Members.

Why is this happening?

Have you noticed your grocery bills increase over the last few years? Have you been shocked at restaurant prices when you dine out? Food prices around the globe have continued to climb, affecting all of our pockets, but disproportionality affecting our most vulnerable populations, making it difficult for millions of families to afford nutritious meals. We see this up close and personal when we get hundreds of emails and phone calls from folks in need of food support who weren’t able to register. Some of the cities we serve have 2,000-4,000 people on the text list waiting to be alerted that the distribution is open. It’s heartbreaking.

This is why our Food Distributions are so critical. While we can’t support entire populations of Veterans and Service Members, we do support as many as we can.

What you can do to help

Soldiers’ Angels food distributions currently operate in six locations across the country, serving 200-250 Veterans and Active Duty Military at each location on a monthly basis. You can help support the work by volunteering at any of our monthly events. These massive efforts take many hands to pull off. Even better? Bring your whole team out for a day of service!

Not near an event location? Your donation to Soldiers’ Angels can have a tremendous impact! Soldiers’ Angels invests approximately $3.5 million annually to sustain this vital support.

If you’re a business or corporation, you can support this work by sponsoring one or more of our events. Your dollars go directly towards fighting Veteran hunger, ensuring military families receive fresh produce and other essential food items.

What to do if you don’t make the list

If you are located in one of the cities where our monthly Military and Veteran Food Distributions are held and are having trouble getting on the list, please be sure to sign up for text message notifications so that you are alerted as soon as registration opens. Head to this link, click on the appropriate city and navigate to the link to submit your phone number and email.

If you attempted to register but were unable to get on the list or wait list for the upcoming event, we have outlined additional food resources here.