Schools are out for summer break and top of mind for us at Second Harvest is child hunger. During summer, children who are at-risk for hunger can prove costly in too many ways to ignore. The immediate impact for children from low income families can include cognitive decline, summer weight gain and learning loss. Long term problems can include susceptibility to chronic disease and compounded learning problems affecting graduation rates.
The Summer Food Service Program is a large part of how we partner to help children get healthy, nutritious snacks and meals throughout the summer months. The Summer Food Service Program ensures low-income children continue to receive
nutritious meals when school is not in session and feeds thousands of kids. For a list of programs serving summer meals to children in our region, click here to search our on-line directory.
1 out of 5 children in our region are considered food insecure and getting nutritious food to those kids is a huge priority. For us, it is a year-round challenge and especially now. Through the Child Hunger Initiative, Second Harvest aims to feed children in a more holistic way to create food security for the entire family. By partnering with schools to provide food for families the initiative will dramatically increase the amount of meals families and their children will receive to solve childhood hunger in our region. Our goal is to start School-Based Mobile Pantries this September at five sites in Lorain County. We’re also planning the first of it’s kind, Child Hunger Summit, on October 18, 2018 to convene partners from all sectors in Lorain County to discuss child hunger as a community and consider how we create a bright future for all children. More information to come in the coming months.
But we need your help. When everyone else is trying to dial down and relax during the summer months, we need to double our effort. This extra effort requires extra resources. If possible, please consider making a donation, or an extra gift, to help reach everyone who needs us. We promise you it will be so worth it for you and for the thousands of children and their families in our community who will receive nutritious meals because of you. Thanks in advance for all of your care and support. Together, we are creating a bright future for all by cultivating a healthy, hunger-free community.
Julie Chase-Morefield is the President and CEO of Second Harvest Food Bank of North Central Ohio.