Since schools closed in March due to the coronavirus pandemic, families have been put in a very difficult position. In the Foodbank's eight-county service region, 1 in 5 children struggle with hunger.
More than 100,000 children in our area receive one, if not two meals while at school each day. Most of these students rely heavily on free or reduced-price meals, and some are recipients of backpack programs; they receive easy-to-prepare meals for weekends and holiday breaks.
Since schools closed early, families who depend on school meals to ensure their child receives enough nourishing food have been struggling to make ends meet. Though some school districts still offered meals, if parents were lucky enough to still have a job, transportation without school buses was complicated.
Now that summer is here, families still dealing with the effects of COVID-19 and already overextended budgets are forced to continue to make up for lost school meals, in addition to childcare costs and, in many cases, lost wages.
Summer hunger is a problem, especially now with all the financial burdens families are experiencing. Your Foodbank seeks to meet the needs of these children struggling with food insecurity. In partnership with our hunger-relief network, we are here to help by providing nutritious meals and snacks when school is not in session. Food pantries will serve as a much-needed resource for these families and will help them continue feeding their children.
Thank you for helping provide meals to children during summer break. Your support means the difference to so many!