I’m working poor (I actually work for a state university), relatively educated, and live in a city. While there are some very nice suggestions listed, they don’t reflect the reality of being poor.
I live in an apartment building on a block full of apartment buildings; there is no growing my own anything. There are p-patch gardens in my neighborhood but real estate is so expensive that there is almost no likelihood of new ones being opened up, and the ones already in existence have long waiting lists to join. Plus the cost of having one — seeds, starts, tools aren’t free.
Being diabetic (from such experiences as having $78/month for food stamps, at one point) means I cannot eat the top ramen/mac and cheese heavy diets that poor typically eat. I do buy quality, non-processed food; and at the end of the month, I often do not have enough calories in my diet (in case you don’t know, starvation is actually bad for diabetes management). My coworkers, who are not single income households, help me out by buying me lunch on a regular basis.
You can ‘educate’ me more, if you think I don’t have an understanding of how to eat properly, but that education doesn’t mean I have the money to purchase what I need.
The one good thing I can say about the local farmers markets is that they do take food stamps. But when you’re getting $78/month, it’s not enough.