LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) — U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack says his agency will partner with the University of Kentucky for a new initiative to combat childhood hunger.
Vilsack was in Lexington on Thursday to announce that his department’s first Rural Child Poverty Nutrition Center will be started at UK. Vilsack says the federal Agriculture Department will invest $2.5 million in the initiative.
He says the center will distribute grants to impoverished rural areas in a number of states. Those communities will use the funds to better coordinate existing child nutrition programs and find new ways to combat childhood hunger.
Federal officials say about 85 percent of all persistently poor counties in the U.S. are in rural areas.
Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear says the center will take aim at the root causes of childhood hunger.
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