ALLEN COUNTY, Ind. (WFFT)- The Saint Joseph Community Health Foundation revealed the results of a study on Allen County's most vulnerable populations Wednesday morning.
The study was done by the research institute at Purdue Fort Wayne, and aims to pin-point which communities need assistance the most.
“It really looks very carefully at each census and each zip code, at what is household income, what is the race, what are the challenges in those communities?" said Meg Distler with the St. Joseph Community Health Foundation.
While the southeast and east central sides of the county stood out, Distler said people all over Allen County may need help.
”We see the mix of population, the amount of education, the employment rates. We can see whether or not they can communicate speaking the English language," she said.
The results show 1/5 of Allen County residents lives below the poverty line, with many of those living in the southeast side 46806 zip code.
“We’re looking at central city neighborhoods as the ones who often have some of the most vulnerable populations. They’ve got a large number of low income residents," said Rachel Blakeman with the research institute.
Distler said the statistic that was the most surprising for her was that about 36 percent of Allen County renters spend over 1/3 of their income on rent. With that, it was found that 1 in 5 children will go to bed hungry in Allen County tonight.
“1/3 of Allen County is in a Food Desert area, so I think that calls for a lot of looking at," Distler said.
The city is already discussing ways to use the findings of the study. The goal is to make resources more accessible to those in need.
”As dollars are being spent, they can be targetted to the populations that need it the most," Blakeman said.
Read the full study here.