Florida Blue Foundation Announces 2024 Food Security Grant Applications Now Open

JACKSONVILLE – Florida Blue Foundation, the philanthropic affiliate for the state’s Blue Cross Blue Shield plan, has announced that applications for their 2024 Food Security Grant program is now open.  The goal of the Food Security program is to improve access to affordable, healthy, and nutritional foods for vulnerable populations who live in food insecure communities.

The Florida Blue Foundation seeks to fund programs that support vulnerable populations who struggle to afford and access healthy and nutritious foods. The goal is to improve food security for these communities and promote healthier choices. Research has shown that when people have reliable access to fresh, local foods, they are more likely to make healthier choices, leading to better health outcomes.

According to U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Economic Research Service (USDA ERS), the household food insecurity rate in the United States has increased to 12.8% in 2022, affecting 17 million households nationwide. This is a significant increase from 2021’s rate of 10.2% and 2020’s rate of 3.9%. In Florida alone, 1 in 9 people (equivalent to 2,314,370 individuals) face hunger, with 1 in 6 of them being children (equivalent to 613,180 children).

It is essential to ensure that everyone has access to nutritious food in order to lead a healthy and fulfilling life. The USDA ERS defines food security as having consistent access to enough food for an active and healthy lifestyle. Unfortunately, food insecurity is a prevalent issue in all communities, with rural areas being particularly affected due to factors such as poverty, lack of transportation, unemployment, and high cost of living. The consequences of food insecurity can be severe, negatively impacting people’s health and well-being.

The Florida Blue Foundation will provide four-year grants to nonprofit organizations that have documented expertise and experience in addressing food insecurity. Programs should support equitable access to healthy food and program services and should focus on moving underserved or marginalized communities from food insecurity to food security.

The 2024 Food Security priority is Improving Access to Healthy Food. Applications are due by Monday, May 6, 2024 before 3:00 p.m. (EST).

All applicants will be notified of their status on or before September 12, 2024.

To learn more, please visit:  www.FloridaBlue.com/Foundation