SOURCE: Harrah's Foundation

Harrah's Foundation

November 20, 2009 08:06 ET

National Research Study Finds Senior Hunger on the Rise; Six Million at Risk

Harrah's, Meals On Wheels Unveil Study and Dedicate the 'Harrah's Institute for Volunteer Management' Program in Alexandria, Virginia

WASHINGTON, DC--(Marketwire - November 20, 2009) - The Meals On Wheels Association of America (MOWAA) unveiled a national senior hunger study, underwritten by the Harrah's Foundation. Developed as an extension of the study originally presented in 2008, this state-by-state analysis of senior hunger revealed that the number of seniors facing the threat of hunger is increasing with seniors in the South experiencing the greatest risk of going hungry. After the study was presented to the Hunger Caucus in the U.S. House of Representatives, MOWAA dedicated their volunteer institute within the National Center for Nutrition Leadership, "The Harrah's Institute for Volunteer Management."

"Hunger is a disease, but we have the cure to end senior hunger today. We just need the leadership and the courage to get it done," said Enid A. Borden, president and CEO of Meals On Wheels Association of America. "After the seven years of unwavering support that the Harrah's Foundation has shown our organization, it is only fitting we honor their Foundation by naming our volunteer institute after their generous foundation."

"Harrah's underwrote this important research to understand the causes and the extent of senior hunger; this provides us the knowledge to work together with Meals On Wheels and other corporate partners to solve this very curable disease in our lifetime," said Jan Jones, senior vice president of government affairs and communications, Harrah's Entertainment and a member of the Board of Trustees of the Harrah's Foundation. "It is important to Harrah's to maintain our support of community organizations that improve the quality of life for seniors in our communities and across the nation."

The study -- entitled "Senior Hunger in the United States, Differences across States and Rural and Urban Areas" -- was commissioned by MOWAA and conducted by James Ziliak, Ph.D., director of the Center for Poverty Research of the University of Kentucky and Craig Gundersen, Ph.D., associate professor in the Department of Agricultural and Consumer Economics at the University of Illinois, and was developed as a follow up to last year's study, "The Causes, Consequences and Future of Senior Hunger in America."

The study found:

--  Senior hunger is rising, six million seniors are hungry;
--  Poverty is a factor in senior hunger, however 62% of at risk seniors
    are ABOVE the poverty line;
--  Although each state has at risk seniors, the bottom ten states with
    the most at risk seniors include (in order from highest to lowest risk):
    Mississippi, South Carolina, Arkansas, Texas, New Mexico, Georgia, Alabama,
    Louisiana, North Carolina and Oklahoma.

Since 2002, Harrah's has been the largest corporate sponsor of MOWAA, contributing more than $5 million and more than 38 meal-deliver trucks to MOWAA programs across the country.

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The Harrah's Foundation is a private, 501(c)(3) foundation established to provide financial support to qualified organizations in communities where Harrah's employees live and work. Established in 2002, the Harrah's Foundation is funded by Harrah's Entertainment, Inc., portfolio of properties and supports social reinvestment programs by funding eligible 501(c)(3) organizations dedicated to seniors, education and civic programs. Since its formation, the Harrah's Foundation has committed $70 million to nonprofit organizations throughout the United States. More information is available at


Harrah's Entertainment, Inc. is the world's largest provider of branded casino entertainment. Since its beginning in Reno, Nevada, more than 70 years ago, Harrah's has grown through development of new properties, expansions and acquisitions, and now owns or manages casinos on four continents. The Company's properties operate primarily under the Harrah's®, Caesars® and Horseshoe® brand names; Harrah's also owns the London Clubs International family of casinos and the World Series of Poker®. Harrah's Entertainment is focused on building loyalty and value with its customers through a unique combination of great service, excellent products, unsurpassed distribution, operational excellence and technology leadership. Harrah's is committed to environmental sustainability and energy conservation and recognizes the importance of being a responsible steward of the environment. For more information, please visit


The Meals On Wheels Association of America (MOWAA) is the oldest and largest national organization in the United States representing those programs that provide meals to people in need. To obtain more information about MOWAA or to locate a local Meals On Wheels program, visit the MOWAA website at

Contact Information

  • Contact:
    Jacqueline Peterson
    Harrah’s Entertainment, Inc.
    (702) 494-4829