More children are going hungry during the coronavirus pandemic

Children face food insecurity amid pandemic
Children face food insecurity amid pandemic 02:03

Last Updated Feb 11, 2021 5:10 PM EST

Nearly 24 million adults in the U.S. say their families lack food to last them a week, according to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. In Jacksonville, Florida, thousands of children are not getting enough to eat and teachers are stepping in to help them. 

Anthony Winters, a guidance counselor, sees hungry students every day. Winters, who works at George Washington Carver Elementary School, stocks food donated by Lutheran Social Services of Northeast Florida. His lesson plan is to fight food insecurity for students who may go hungry over the weekend. 

"Once the pandemic hit, the need spiked," he told CBS News. "I'd love to have enough to where I can give every single kid in this building food to go home for an entire month." 

The number of American children facing food insecurity has doubled from 14% to 28%, according to a Northwestern University study

Teachers at the public school stuff backpacks in secret during recess to protect recipients from being shamed. The supplies are not enough and Winters has to ration food. 

"For right now we have to identify the kids that need it the most," Winters said. 

Jahmari and Jayden Brookman have enough to deal with. Their mother lost her job due to the pandemic. "Sometimes I be hungry and I be going in the back and see what they have there," said Jayden, who is 8 years old. 

"If we didn't have no more food, I would've been crying probably," said Jahmari, who is 9. 

Winters took them to the pantry to give them food and nourish their spirits. "You guys are getting it because I know that you guys need it," he told the young boys. 

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    Mark Strassmann

    Mark Strassmann has been a CBS News correspondent since January 2001 and is based in the Atlanta bureau.