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Exhibition coming to St. Louis in July will show 'hunger looks like you and me’

Jeanette Mott Oxford and Leslie Yoffie discussed hunger in the St. Louis reigon with St. Louis on the Air host Don Marsh on Wednesday.
Kelly Moffitt | St. Louis Public Radio
Jeanette Mott Oxford and Leslie Yoffie discussed hunger in the St. Louis reigon with St. Louis on the Air host Don Marsh on Wednesday.

It may be hard to believe, but some 42.2 million Americans go hungry each day. That’s more than one in eight people in the country. That’s according to Michelle Stuffmann, director of outreach and communications for MAZON, a Jewish Response to Hunger, whose exhibit is slated to travel to St. Louis in July.

“The face of hunger is not one you’d expect,” Stuffman said. “It is mostly hidden because hunger doesn’t look the U.S. the way it looks in the third world country. Most people, when they think about hunger, they think of starvation or they think about a homeless person. But the face of hunger in the U.S. looks like you and me. It is hidden among us.”

On Wednesday’s St. Louis on the Air, host Don Marsh discussed the prevalence of hunger in America and in the region as well as the details of the upcoming exhibit. Joining him to discuss the matter, along with Stuffman, was Jeanette Mott Oxford, the executive director of Empower Missouri, and Leslie Yoffie, president of United Hebrew Congregation.

Hunger is correlated to poverty, said Oxford. In Missouri over 15 percent of the population is poor, with some countries measuring more than 33 percent of the population impoverished.

“Food is the thing people feel they can let go,” said Oxford.

Oxford said that maintaining federal funding for nutrition programs, such as SNAP (food stamps) and WIC, is paramount to reducing the issue of hunger in Missouri.

“This is Hunger,” is a traveling exhibit by MAZON, which is designed to raise awareness of what hunger looks like in the United States. A 53-foot trailer travels from city-to-city and participants in the exhibit get to hear the words and images of people who are going hungry in America. The exhibit is coming to St. Louis July 5-7.

Listen to the full conversation about hunger in America and the exhibit here:

Related Event

What: Federation of Reform Temples and Empower Missouri Present "This Is Hunger, MO”

When: July 5 from 12- 3 p.m.; July 6 from 11 a.m. - 6 p.m.; July 7 from 10 a.m. – 1 p.m.; Timed entries beginning on the hour. Reserve a free ticket on website.

Where: United Hebrew Congregation, 13788 Conway Rd.

More information.

St. Louis on the Air brings you the stories of St. Louis and the people who live, work and create in our region. St. Louis on the Air host Don Marsh and producers Mary EdwardsAlex Heuer and Kelly Moffitt give you the information you need to make informed decisions and stay in touch with our diverse and vibrant St. Louis region. 

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Kelly Moffitt joined St. Louis Public Radio in 2015 as an online producer for St. Louis Public Radio's talk shows St. Louis on the Air.