In November 2014 the High Point Enterprise published a series of articles about the issue of food hardship and food insecurity.
Through this series of articles the community learned that the Greensboro/High Point MSA was ranked number two in the nation for Food Hardship with 24% of their neighbors reporting at some point in the previous 12 months that they did not have enough money to buy the groceries that they needed. It was also learned that 19% of the population faces food insecurity, meaning that they do not have access to fresh healthy food on a regular basis.
Since the series first ran the Greensboro/High Point MSA is now ranked number one in the nation in food hardship.
A group of concerned citizens came together to address the issues of food hardship and food insecurity in the Greater High Point and formed the Greater High Point Food Alliance (GHPFA). This group represents all walks of life—business leaders, educators, philanthropists, neighborhood leaders, those that have struggled with hunger, students, and members of the faith community.
Our mission is to, “strive to coordinate and improve the effectiveness of entities in greater High Point focused on alleviating hunger by creating and executing city-wide and neighborhood-focused initiatives to develop more just and sustainable food systems.”
The structure of GHPFA is decentralized, being volunteer driven by the seven different work teams. Each of the teams works with the three pilot neighborhoods—Burns Hill, Washington Street, and West End—to alleviate hunger by creating food secure zones.
The role of GHPFA is to connect the resources in order to improve the effectiveness of the different organizations working to improve food security. Since the inception of GHPFA awareness of the issues has been raised with over 75 actions items being completed including cooking and finance classes have been provided in the food deserts. Working with the City of High Point over 34 pieces of vacant city property has been adopted to be used as community gardens.
Our vision is to, “create just and sustainable supplemental food systems for Greater High Point by fostering unity, developing responsibility and empowering communities.” We are well on our way of seeing our vision being fulfilled.
Rev. Carl W. Vierling
Greater High Point Food Alliance