March 27, 2020

On today's show, Adrian and Ethan continue their discussion of the topic on everyone's mind right now, Coronavirus.  Later in the show we bring you the second part of an earlier interview with Rise Against Hunger.

As of this recording, more than 43% of the American population live in States with stay-at-home orders.  A growing number of states and counties across the nation are cracking down on residents' movements amid the spread of the coronavirus to the point that more than 100 million Americans have been ordered to stay home.

While some officials are instituting shelter-in-place orders, others are calling their directives stay-at-home orders.

Parks and hiking trails are closing across the country as they had become spots for large gatherings and socializing.

California ordered its 40 million residents to stay at home except for essential activities beginning last Thursday night in the largest such lockdown in the U.S., as the nation’s total coronavirus cases rose to more than 14,000.

The coronavirus pandemic has forced widespread school closures in the United States in an unprecedented disruption of K-12 schooling.  School closures due to coronavirus have impacted at least 124,000 U.S. public and private schools and affected at least 55 million students.

There are at least 98,000 public schools and at least 34,000 private schools in the U.S., according to the National Center for Education Statistics. Those schools educate almost 50.8 million public school students and 5.8 million private school students.

Digital Divide
Digital Divide

Low-income families might also have trouble keeping their children learning because they can’t afford the necessary technology. The lack of access to reliable computers or tablets and high-speed internet becomes much more problematic when kids need digital devices to learn at home.

More than 21 million Americans do not have access to high-speed Internet, according to the Federal Communications Commission’s latest data. 

Nearly one in five students between kindergarten and 12th grade do not have computers or speedy Web connections, according to data compiled by the Pew Research Center in 2018.

Because of this inequality in access to technology, low-income students often lag behind their wealthier peers in reading and math in normal times.  Although closing schools may slow the spread of the new coronavirus, widespread, prolonged closures may deepen inequalities in students’ test scores and in how teachers treat individual students.

Nearly 30 million children in the U.S. count on schools for free or low-cost breakfast, lunch, snacks and sometimes dinner — but most of those children are now at home.

The school lunch program is the second-biggest anti-hunger initiative in the country, after SNAP, or food stamps. And while classes may be cancelled, school leaders are working hard to make sure kids have food to eat.  

This brings us to Part 2 of our earlier interview with Rise Against Hunger...

Rise Against Hunger, a national nonprofit, is an international hunger relief organization that distributes food and life-changing aid to the world’s most vulnerable, mobilizing the necessary resources to end hunger by 2030.  @RiseAgainstHunger

Rise Against Hunger meals, packaged by volunteers, are designed to provide a comprehensive array of micronutrients. Their meals include enriched rice, soy protein, dried vegetables and 23 essential vitamins and nutrients. To date they serve 74 countries and have provided 445,741,336 packages meals.

Rise Against Hunger Atlanta was founded in 2010 and serves the Georgia, Eastern Alabama, and Chattanooga regions.  Bev had the opportunity to talk with Michael Ashley, the Atlanta Community Engagement Manager.

Let’s listen to Part 2 of our interview with Rise Against Hunger.