People go to bed hungry in Ireland every day with almost one in ten households here experiencing food poverty - being unable to get healthy affordable food.
This investigation was part-funded through crowdfunding (€581 of the proposed €1,950). We decided to reduce the project's scope and went ahead with the investigation with additional support from our investigative fund. This allowed us to focus on the growing number of people seeking help to feed themselves and their families as well as what the government is doing to address this.
Over 60,000 children live in consistent poverty with many not eating dinner regularly. Meal packs, food banks and penny dinners fill this void on a daily basis. However, this food is mostly provided by charities, volunteers and community organisations.
Food quality impacts health but a healthy food basket can cost up to one third of take home pay in low income households, according to research by safefood published in 2020.
Reliance on cheaper processed food can also impact those who rely on food banks, according to researchers in the UK who found some may suffer nutritional deficiency given that much of the donated food is processed rather than fresh.
So what exactly is the State doing to stem the rise of food poverty, especially in light of the cost of living crisis?
HELP US INVESTIGATE
We want to investigate how reliant the charities, volunteers and community organisations who provide food on a daily basis are on food and funding donations for their survival.
We will examine what is being done about food poverty by the Government in light of the cost of living crisis.
As part of this, we will explore whether food poverty is a symptom of Government policy - as highlighted by some experts who say that underlying issues such as low income, unemployment and rising food prices need to be tackled rather than relying on food banks as a solution.
Finally, the prevalence of undernourishment in Ireland is 2.5% so we want to look into the types of food available at food providers in Ireland to find out if similar issues occur here as in the UK.
If you want to make a contribution to help this investigation happen, click the 'Fund This Proposal' button. Noteworthy investigations are sourced from and crowdfunded by the public.