UTCH 2018

Uniting to Combat Hunger

For families already struggling to put food on the table, the impacts of the COVID pandemic and high inflation has had a far-reaching impact on Americans across the country, ranging from job loss to food insecurity. Not being able to have access to enough nutritionally adequate foods to live an active and healthy life is something no one should have to worry about, including our nation’s service men and women.

Defined as a lack of consistent access to enough food for every person in a household to live an active, healthy life, food insecurity is a problem that may affect 1 in 8 people in America, and 25% of active-duty military and Reserve members have had to rely on food bank donations to feed their families. A recent survey from Blue Star Families identified that 14% of enlisted, active-duty household respondents reported facing difficulty putting food on the table in the previous year.

The VFW and Humana think this is completely unacceptable, and we need YOUR help supporting the "Uniting to Combat Hunger" (UTCH) campaign to fight food insecurity and strike a knock-out blow against hunger for good.

Despite making strides toward combatting food insecurity this year, the issue does not end with the start of a new year. The UTCH campaign is pushing strongly into 2024, and both the VFW and Humana remain dedicated to addressing the challenges surrounding food insecurity.


How Did UTCH Start?

Defined as the lack of access to enough nutritionally adequate foods to live an active, healthy life, food insecurity contributes to:

  • Serious health complications, especially when people facing hunger are forced to choose between spending money on food and medicine or medical care.
  • Damage to a child's ability to learn and grow.
  • Difficult decisions for seniors - often living on fixed incomes - such as choosing between paying for food and critical healthcare.

Food insecurity is a serious societal issue that may affect 1 in 8 people in America, and as many as 1 in 4 Iraq and Afghanistan War veterans. The VFW and our friends at Humana thought that this was unacceptable, and in 2018, established the "Uniting to Combat Hunger" campaign to raise awareness and help put an end to food insecurity across the country.

To date, the UTCH campaign has provided more than 4.5 million meals to those facing hunger and food insecurity. 


VFW's "Uniting to Combat Hunger" Progress and Grant Opportunity

Since 2018, organizations affiliated with Humana and the VFW have provided more than 4.5 million meals to food insecurity agencies through the UTCH campaign! We plan to provide 1 million additional meals during the 2024 campaign year, but we need your help. The efforts made by VFW Posts and Auxiliaries in conjunction with local Humana agents have been the key contributing factor to the campaign’s massive success. 

In support of these amazing efforts, the VFW Foundation offers a UTCH Grant through which we provide up to $1,500 in reimbursement for donations of food and money made to nonprofits that directly address food insecurity.  To learn more about this opportunity and its availability please visit vfw.org/grants.  

For more information about UTCH, please contact the VFW Foundation at foundation@vfw.org.