JLDOC’s Healthy Living Initiative

Making an Impact: Healthy Living

One League; one mission; one community-based impact model.

JLslider81percentBackground

In the 2014-15 League year the JLDOC made a strategic, focused shift to take on one community issue rather than spreading our efforts among a variety of programs. The reason? We believe that by focusing our efforts we can make a strong, measurable impact. Our membership voted and chose to take on a pressing need in our community: healthy living.

The 2015-16 year was dedicated to the how and with whom of the project. How can we improve health living in Durham and Orange Counties? And with whom should we partner to develop our programming? Our mission: to increase physical and economic access to food alongside community partners in the coming years.

Our Partner: Farmer Foodshare

In the winter of 2016, the JLDOC released a request for partnership application to the community. Twenty-eight nonprofits in Durham and Orange Counties applied, and after an exhaustive selection process, Farmer Foodshare emerged as our official community partner. Farmer Foodshare has a wide-reaching presence in the community, and will allow us to work with several area organizations to improve food access. We will train our JLDOC volunteers to be food ambassadors to provide cooking demonstrations and work donation stations at local farmer’s markets. We look forward to developing programming with Farmer Foodshare that will improve the lives of the food insecure in our community.

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Why food access?

  • One in four children in North Carolina are food insecure
  • 81 percent of N.C. households receiving food assistance don’t know where their next meal is coming from
  • 28 percent of food pantries in N.C. have had to turn clients away for lack of food
  • In 33 percent of families receiving food assistance, at least one adult is employed

JLslider28percentBetween 2010-2015, North Carolina has regularly ranked among the top ten states with the highest percentage of citizens experiencing food shortages. [1] There are approximately 160-170,000 different people in our state receiving emergency food assistance in a given week. Many of these families are forced to choose between heating their homes, paying for housing and purchasing food for their families.

Even in areas with high employment rates, the statistics are alarming. In Chapel Hill-Carrboro Schools alone there are more than 2,553 hungry kids.[2] In Durham County, 20 percent of children, and 18 percent of the overall population are food insecure.[3]


[1] Data is from 2014 Hunger in America Study, by Feeding America and the Food Hardship in America 2012 Report from the Food Research and Action Center.
[2] Number of children enrolled in the National School Lunch Program