The World Food Prize Foundation

Who is ALICE?

During the morning panels, United Ways of Iowa Executive Director, Deann Cook, will give a brief overview of the demographics, budget numbers, challenges and consequences facing ALICE. 

Following the introduction of ALICE, the subsequent panel will begin a more in-depth conversation amongst various members who are already investing in unique solutions to address the barriers in their communities. 

Moderator : Deann Cook | Executive Director, United Ways of Iowa

Other Panelists:

Darlene Barnes | Regional Administrator, USDA Food & Nutrition Service (FNS)

Amy Meyer | Executive Director, United Way of Mahaska County

Ali Wilson | Volunteer Engagement Director, United Way of Wapello County


Who is ALICE?

The ALICE Report was recently released in 2016 by the United Ways of Iowa. This report looks at the segment of Iowa's population that is above the federal poverty level, but unable to meet a basic needs budget (food, housing, transportation, health and child care) in the county in which they live. They are identified as Asset-Limited, Income-Constrained, Employed (ALICE). Nearly one-third of Iowans fall into this category, 19% of them are above FPL. These Iowans are working, earning and paying taxes and making very difficult choices every week to sustain their families. 

ALICE is not an individual, but a conceptual blending of all those in our community who bring home a paycheck that doesn't stretch to cover a household's basic needs. Though many are aware of the struggles of ALICE, the depth of the struggle is often misunderstood and we underestimate the consequences for all of us when we don't listen to ALICE's tale. We find her in all areas of our state, from the cities of Des Moines and Cedar Rapids, to the small towns that make our state. This report shines a light on her opportunities and challenges so we all can begin to ask ourselves, "How does my decision today affect ALICE tomorrow?" 

This report is a first step in further opening the conversation with a common language to create a new ending for ALICE's story. 

More about ALICE

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