The Ballard Food Bank is serving more people than during the recession.
The Ballard Food Bank is serving more people than during the recession. Steve Debenport/getty

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Totally good and normal country:

While the economy is thriving in cities across the country, many middle class people in areas with a high cost of living are struggling to put food on the table.

Food banks in cities that have seen strong job growth and soaring home prices are seeing increased demand from locals struggling to make ends meet and relying on assistance to feed their families.

That's from a CNN Money piece today that explores how cities like Seattle are seeing booming economies but no decrease in the demand for food assistance.

CNN reports that 26,000 families visited the Ballard Food Bank during the 2008 economic downturn. In 2016, 40,000 families visited. In a 2016 story, the Seattle Times reported that the Rainier Valley Food Bank served 22,000 individual visits in one month, up from 6,000 in 2009. A food bank serving California's Bay Area, Second Harvest, now averages 257,000 people per month, an increase from a decade ago, according to CNN.

"There's this hunger paradox: You would think the wealth would rise all boats," Cat Cvengros, vice president of development and marketing at Second Harvest, told CNN, "but it hasn't and it's created a major crisis and we are seeing families live on their last legs."

Read more here.