Volunteers Address Lansing's Poverty - WLNS TV 6 Lansing - Jackson | Your Local News Leader

Volunteers Address Lansing's Poverty

Just days after new census data showed one in four children in Michigan lives below the poverty level, volunteers handed out food to hungry families in Lansing, where the numbers show poverty is even worse.

At Pennway Church in Lansing, lines full of people extended around the building this morning, with empty baskets in hand, ready to fill them with food.

"Although the economy is changing somewhat, families are still struggling," said Joan Jackson Johnson, director of community service in Lansing.

Johnson says the city's homeless count is near four thousand, and the latest US census data shows half of the children in Lansing live below the poverty level.

"This is the great city of Lansing and the thought that we have children going to bed hungry is just unacceptable," said Johnson.

"When you offer food, and the doors open at nine, and people line up at six a.m., that tells you something about the need in the community," said Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero.

Bernero was among the volunteers handing out food today at the mobile food pantry.

He says programs like this aren't a permanent solution, but go a long way to supplement a struggling family's food supply.

So how much can one basket help?

"A lot," said Roshonda Todd, "I don't run out of food, especially when you have kids."

Todd gets food assistance from the state each month, but says sometimes its not enough.

"That food might not last you for a whole month. that might only last you three or two weeks," said Todd.

"What we're doing is trying to make sure no kid in Lansing goes to bed hungry," said Jackson Johnson.

She says it won't be easy, and says it'll take the entire community stepping up to make sure Lansing's hungry are fed.



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