The Food Bank of South Jersey (FBSJ) hosted 250 children and community partners on June 21 for an afternoon of games, food, live entertainment, reading and music to mark the beginning of the non-profit organization’s award-winning Summer Meals Program.
The Food Bank is projecting to deliver a half million breakfasts, lunches, dinners, and snacks to 8,000 low-income children at 168 locations across South Jersey during this year’s 12-week Summer Meals Program. The children who attended the Wiggins Park Kick-Off event are enrolled at summer meal sites located throughout Camden, Burlington, Gloucester, and Salem counties.
There are more than 57,000 children struggling with food insecurity in South Jersey today. During the school year, many of these children rely on the free and reduced meal programs to get the nutritious food they need to lead healthy lives.
When school lets out for summer, the Food Bank takes over to ensure these children are not forgotten during the summer season. In areas such as Salem County, where children may not have a dedicated place to eat during the summer, FBSJ will deploy the Bus Stop Cafe in which a mobile school bus pantry will bring meals to children that they can also eat on the bus.
The Food Bank will also provide books and activities for children at these sites thanks to a generous donation from First Book, a national non-profit organization distributing reading materials to children in need.
This item submitted by Lauren Hann for the Food Bank of South Jersey.