CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) - It's something a lot of people take for granted: food.
"These kids are going to bed hungry," said Amanda Winschel with the Southeast Missouri Food Bank.
New numbers from the Food Research and Action Center show 1 in 4 homes with children in the U.S. struggles with being able to consistently afford food.
"We see it everywhere, I always say there's not a school or community that doesn't have a child hunger problem, there's always those families that need help," Winschel said.
That's a similar story in Missouri, 24 percent of homes with kids, and 17 percent of homes without kids struggle to provide food.
In Kentucky, 26 percent of homes with children and 20 percent of homes without children are unable to afford enough food to feed their families on a regular basis.
In Illinois, 22 percent of homes with children and 14 percent of homes without children cannot afford enough food to feed their families.
"We are very proactive in trying to combat that hunger," Winschel said.
Winschel with Southeast Missouri Food Bank said they work to help struggling families through programs like Backpacks for Friday.
"These children are relying on that free breakfast and lunch at school, and when they go home they don't have that," Winschel said.
Kids can take home a backpack full of food to help feed their family. Winschel said sometimes families only need the program for a short time, and then get back on their feet.
"They work, it's a working poor, and we see that more and more, and we are trying to help them even though they're working and just try to help them feed their children," Winschel said.
Heartland News reached out to a number of people who tell us they struggle to provide food for their family. Some of those people said it's too difficult of an issue to talk about on camera.
Winschel said sometimes that can even be a problem when they're trying to help. If people don't come forward, they can't give them food.
"We do have a pride issue, that's why the backpack program is so discreet, in that way, so we're able to send that home in a backpack, no other students know it, no other families know it," Winschel said.
A Missouri Hunger Task Force met Wednesday in Cape Girardeau. They talked about a number of things, how to help combat the growing hunger problem.
You can see the rest of the state numbers here.