Basic Needs

Imagine not being able to pay your next gas bill or afford another month in your apartment. That is something so many in our community face every single day. By helping people meet their basic needs – safe havens, stocked pantries, reliable transportation and more – we’re positioning them for a better tomorrow.
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What We’re Facing

over 701,000

children in Missouri and Illinois are food insecure


of St. Louis metropolitan area households don't have the monthly income to meet basic living expenses


of households in the St. Louis region are housing cost burdened

Addressing the Need

Food Insecurity

Food insecurity – not knowing where your next meal is coming from – impacts nearly 40% of households in Missouri and Illinois. Food is a basic necessity and people need access to food to lead active, healthy lives.

Housing Security

Over 16,526 people in Missouri and Illinois were experiencing homelessness on any given day in 2018. Over 40% of housing and shelter requests in the last year were for help with rent assistance. Having affordable, safe and stable places to live helps families and individuals have a good quality of life.

Legal Assistance

Sometimes basic needs don’t seem so basic. Seventy-one percent of low-income households experienced at least one civil legal problem in the last year. Legal assistance provides help with basic needs, like housing and access to necessities.


Transportation is vital for getting to jobs, education, healthcare, and other resources. Last year, United Way of Greater St. Louis 2-1-1 received more than 2,700 requests for transportation assistance in the St. Louis region, and 77% of these requests were unmet due to a lack of existing resources.

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More On Impact

Our impact doesn't just stop here. Continue learning about what our neighbors in Missouri and Illinois are facing and how we support them.

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