ORLANDO, Fla. — A study reveals a disheartening statistic in Orlando: Nearly 8,000 seniors go hungry every day.
Charles Bennett spent the morning at Second Harvest Food Bank, boxing up food for the Haven of Hope Ministries in Orlando where lately, many of the people who need food are seniors.
"A lot more and more older people are coming in," Bennett said.
Monday, Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer opened a summit on hunger among senior citizens, and the statistics are discouraging.
In Orlando, an estimated 8,000 seniors go hungry every day.
"It's a senior population that continues to grow, and the need's going to be even more," Dyer said.
It doesn't take much for seniors to slip into food insecurity if vegetables, fruit or protein are taken away.
For many seniors, that is exactly what's happening.
Roxanne Nordquist with Haven of Hope said seniors are falling through the cracks.
"We want our seniors to be protected," Nordquist said.
The summit was aimed at finding ways to keep seniors from falling through those cracks.
In the meantime, volunteers keep loading up truckloads of food for folks who otherwise might not eat.
In Orange County, Meals on Wheels and the neighborhood lunch program provide meals to nearly a 1,000 seniors five days a week.
Over 1,100 are on the waiting list for help from those programs.