Summer Feeding Program dishes up more meals to more community groups
Youth attending a summer camp in Kinston in August line up for lunch at the cafeteria at Northeast Elementary School, one of six sites LCPS operated in its Summer Feeding Program. More than 30,000 free breakfast and lunch meals were plated during the eight-week program, an increase of 13 percent over 2018.
From football players to summer campers, they came by the thousands for the free breakfast and lunches served up from mid-June to mid-August in LCPS’s Summer Feeding Program.
Total meals served increased 13 percent from the 2018 program. In all, the district’s Child Nutrition Department plated 30,191 meals – 9,789 breakfast meals and 20,402 lunch meals. The 2018 total was 26,897. The program also provided 3,728 snacks to campers this summer.
LCPS operated six school cafeterias for all or part of the summer in order to provide nutritious meals to students enrolled in the district’s summer academic camps, to young people attending summer camps offered by non-profits like Boys & Girls Club and Salvation Army and to high school students taking part in summer athletic training.
“The Summer Feeding Program is not only a way to feed our students when they are in camps, but also a community outreach program in that we have been able to reach different agencies, students that walk in who live around our sites, reach churches that have programs, and also we have offered our program as a support to football teams,” LCPS Child Nutrition Director Danelle Smith said.
“Reaching out to the various programs, various camps and different organizations allows us to reach out to the community while also feeding children ages 18 and under a hot meal”
The program is offered through the Federal School Nutrition Program. All meals met federal nutrition guidelines and, under federal rules, are provided for free to anyone 18 years old and younger.
Summer Feeding Program sites operated at Northeast, La Grange, Southwood and Northwest elementary schools, Contentnea-Savannah K-8 School and Kinston High School. Twenty-two child nutrition employees staffed the sites.