KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- They put their lives on the line for their country, all while they're families back home go hungry. That's what a "Hunger in America" report says is happening to 25 percent of the nation's military families.
One-in-seven Americans battle hunger across America, relying on assistance programs and food pantries
Among that number are the families of the brave men and women of the U.S. armed forces, who put their lives on the line.
"It is disheartening because you don't want someone, particularly those folks who are deployed somewhere away from their families to also have to worry about are my children eating?" said Harvesters’ CEO Valerie Nicholson-Watson.
Military families make up 27 percent of the households served by Harvesters in Kansas City. Seven percent of them have a family member on active duty.
"The money just doesn't stretch. People have to make some really tough decisions on whether they pay utilities, or whether they pay their mortgage, or if they can afford medication,” said Nicholson-Watson.
Military families aren't alone. Nicholson-Watson says the need continues to grow among other groups you might not expect.
"We're actually serving people who have college degrees, and even some with post baccalaureate degrees who are needing food assistance because they are under-employed," she said.
But when it comes to providing for families in need military or otherwise, Nicholson-Watson says the Kansas City community has really been helped. The study didn't offer an indication for what's behind the number of military families needing help. Some believe low pay is a factor. A Pentagon spokesman told FOX News the study is inaccurate.