MARYLAND

Valerie Ervin to live on food stamps for a week

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For five days in Feb., Montgomery County Councilwoman Valerie Ervin plans to live on a daily food budget of just $5.

Around 80,000 Montgomery County residents live below the poverty line, and Ervin says that plight goes largely ignored.

"Montgomery County is a great place to live, and it has a lot of affluence, but there are a lot of people that are barely making it," Ervin added.

Soon, she plans to see what it's like to like on food stamps.

For a week in Feb., Ervin will live on a daily food budget of just $5, and she wants others to join her. She hopes to get more than 1,000 people nationwide to participate in the challenge dubbed "Snap the Silence." The challenge is an effort to raise awareness about the need for food stamp programs.

Ervin said, "It really hits home when you see a child who can't focus because their stomach is growling. That should not be happening in our community, and it's been hidden for a long time."

The number of poverty-stricken families has been rising since 2005. Ervin hopes by raising awareness, she can ease a difficulty for thousands of families.

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