Real Stories of Hunger

Your Story: Jaime

I'm a single of mom four kids, and right now we live on $300 a month. The stress of that keeps me up at night — I literally have trouble sleeping. The only way we are able to survive on that is with the help of food stamps. People ask me what I would do without them — I have no idea. It's not something I even want to think about. We would probably just go hungry.

Sometimes I wonder how things ended up this way. I did everything right. I went to college, got married. I was a teacher until debilitating disabilities forced me home. I guess you can do everything right and life still doesn't work out. That's something many people don't realize.

Our food stamps were cut this past year by $11. Most people think $11 is nothing. Well for my family, that's two days of food. It was really hard to cut back on two days of food — it involved getting cheaper, less nutritious food and depending on charity. It's not like I can cut back on other areas of our life. We don't have TV, Internet, or any money going towards anything unnecessary.

Recently I heard on the news that they were thinking of cutting food stamps further. I started crying. Don't they know people like us need food stamps to feed our children? We're not abusing the system. We depend on them to survive.

I know my kids have bright futures. They will go to college and live lives better than what I can give them now. But right now, I need to provide them with the basic nutrition they need to get there. I'm thankful that food stamps give me the means to do that. They help me — and many others across this nation — give their kids the futures they deserve.

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