Summer Food Programs

Happy Friday, and Happy July! I hope you all have fun plans for the 4th of July weekend! While I normally attempt to do post related to the theme of upcoming celebrations, this year is a little different. This post is inspired by something that a volunteer where I work was speaking about, and his passion for it made me want to get involved and tell all of you about it as well! This week’s suggestion of how to change the world is to participate in a summer food program in your community.

During the school year, children receive breakfast and lunch at school. However, over the summer, millions of kids deal with food insecurity. This can stunt development causing them to fall behind in school and life, and create a cycle of generational poverty. Thankfully, many community based programs are choosing to do something about this problem. They are participating in the USDA summer meals program in order to help provide the basic need of food to children, and by doing so contributing to a bridge in the achievement gap.

However, these organizations cannot do it alone. They need us (volunteers and donors) to step up to the plate. So, if this is something you would love to help with, here is how to get involved:

  1. Contact your State agency to find a site that serves summer meals. The State agency will help to see if you are located in an eligible area that can serve summer meals and connect you with a sponsor organization.
  2. Promote the Summer Meals Programs to your community. Put up flyers and door hangers with information on where free summer meals are being served to help families find a nearby Summer Meals site.
  3. Provide fun activities for the kids & teens at your site to keep them coming back and to keep them physically and mentally active. Recruit teens to help at your site to give them responsibilities and new skills.
  4. Help serve meals or transport meals for other organizations that are involved with the Summer Meals Program. Organize physical or learning activities for the kids & teens.

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