End Hunger Connecticut! Spearheads Formation of Advisory Board on Nutrition for Older Adults

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Statewide anti-hunger and food security organizations, health and senior wellness advocates, convene with goal of improving access to and awareness of nutrition services, resources for older adults.

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End Hunger Connecticut!, a statewide anti-hunger and food security organization, with headquarters in Hartford, is pleased to announce the formation of an Advisory Board on Nutrition for Older Adults. The Board, which includes representatives from anti-hunger and food security organizations, senior advocacy groups, service providers and senior wellness advocates, will serve as a catalyst for increasing seniors’ access to healthy foods among other vital services.

“Many older adults struggle to get the nutrition they need,” Lucy Nolan, Executive Director, End Hunger Connecticut!, said. “When we look at senior nutrition, there are many barriers to accessing programs, including transportation, application processes and limited awareness. As a group, we are committed to developing strategies for overcoming these barriers and giving voice to this underserved population through advocacy efforts to increase program access and funding.”

The Food Research and Action Center (FRAC) reports only 35% of eligible seniors participate in the supplemental nutrition assistance program (SNAP), citing lack of awareness about the program and how to apply as contributing factors. Further research conducted by the University of Kentucky Center for Poverty Research reports seniors experiencing food insecurity are significantly more likely to have lower intakes of calories and major nutrients, to be in poor or fair health, and to have limitations in activities of daily living. The U.S. Census Bureau reports that 14.8% of Connecticut’s population is over 65 years of age (2012).

End Hunger Connecticut!’s Advisory Board on Nutrition for Older Adults will focus its efforts on senior nutrition in five key areas – improving access to and availability of nutritious foods; food delivery; preventative health care and treatment as it pertains to nutrition; food preparation; and, opportunities to engage volunteers in improving all areas. Organizations represented on the Board, include: AARP Connecticut; At Home in Greenwich; Community Health Center Association of Connecticut; Connecticut Food Bank; Connecticut State Health Insurance Assistance Program; CT Department of Social Services; End Hunger Connecticut!; Southwestern Connecticut Agency on Aging; the Center for Public Health and Health Policy, University of Connecticut Health Center; and, Western Connecticut Area Agency on Aging.

“By establishing this Board we hope to foster deeper collaborations between food security and senior service organizations. This will lay the foundation for increased advocacy for and communication of the nutrition assistance programs that are vital to seniors. We are also committed to identifying additional opportunities for community and government to collaborate to improve availability of and access to senior nutrition programs,” Nolan said.

To learn more about End Hunger Connecticut!, visit: http://www.endhungerct.org.

About End Hunger Connecticut!

End Hunger Connecticut! is a statewide anti-hunger and food security organization. By focusing on advocacy, outreach, education and research, EHC! serves as a comprehensive anti-hunger resource for community organizations, legislators, and low-income families. To learn more, visit: http://www.endhungerct.org.

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Danielle Cyr
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