North Carolina’s No Kid Hungry Program ~ Summer Meals For Kids!

More than 16 million children in America struggle with hunger, and even more so during the summer months when kids are not in school to receive free or reduced meals. This is not in a rural area or third world country, this is right here in our own back yard. We might be the ones seeing our children suffer from this, or we certainly might know a family around us who this affects. Now, there is good news!

 

 

Recently, our Governor Bev Perdue joined with No Kid Hungry North Carolina and launched a partnership with Share Our Strength, a national non-profit organization that North Carolina works with, along with others like our Governments, Non-Profit organizations, and Businesses. The goal is to bring about more awareness of the childhood hunger issue in NC and to present solutions that work.

 

The No Kid Hungry program is ending hunger experienced by our kids on a daily basis by joining kids with the healthy foods they need. They bring Governors, Mayors, Businesses and Owners, Chefs, Federal and State Agencies, Educators, and Community Leader together where youth Live at home, Learn at schools, and Play with their friends. The No Kid Hungry program also helps families and teaches them how to prepare and cook healthy and inexpensive meals through another program called “Cooking Matters”.

 

Just as North Carolina has school lunch and breakfast programs, the U.S. Department of Agriculture or the USDA, now offers free summer meals to children across the state and is open to kids through age 18 who come to a summer meals site. Share Our Strength is making sure that the word gets out and lessens the barriers for kids and families to receive the assistance that is available to them. Some of those barriers include simple lack of awareness of the programs, a stigma or stereotype of people getting help, transportation problems, and parent’s trust. This program, along with the help of our communities, will tear these walls down as we come together. In addition, participating in this program helps to bring in federal funds to local communities resulting in a win-win situation. And, there are more than 1,000 sites serving free summer meals across the state, meaning that North Carolina has some great opportunities to help kids, families, and communities all in one!

 

Along with making sure kid’s nutrition needs are met through the summer months, many of the meal sites have exciting and fun activities for the children and youth so that they can stay active and be with their friends too.

Here are some specific details of the program:

  • All meals are FREE for kids and teens up through age 18 that come to a summer meals site.
  • All of the meals and food served follow the USDA nutritional rules and guidelines.
  • Foods and meals are funded by the USDA.
  • All summer meals sites are located at places that are safe for kids and teens to be at such as schools, churches, and community centers.
  • A lot of the meal sites have educational and recreational activities for kids of all ages to have fun, eat and be with their friends, and participate in.
  • There is no application for the program, parents can simply bring their kids to the meals site in their community.

 

In the High Country, summer meal sites are located at~

  1. Mountain View Elementary School – 2789 Hwy. 221 N. Jefferson, NC 28640  Open from June 7th through July 27th, 2012 from 8am – 12:15pm. Call 336-982-8493 with any questions.
  2. Alleghany High School – 404 Trojan Ave. Sparta, NC 28675  Open from May 24th through June 29th, 2012 from 7:30am – 12pm Noon. Call 336-372-8011 with any questions.
  3. Sparta Elementary School – 450 N. Main St. Sparta, NC 28675  Open from May 24th through June 15th, 2012 from 7:30am – 12pm Noon. Call 336-372-2169 with any questions.
  4. Piney Creek Elementary School – 559 Piney Creek School Rd. Piney Creek, NC 28663  Open from May 24th through June 15th, 2012 from 7:30am – 12pm Noon. Call 336-359-2988 with any questions.

Governor Perdue’s North Carolina’s No Kid Hungry program is sponsored generously by the Arby’s Foundation, supported by Weight Watchers, and is part of Share Our Strength’s national No Kid Hungry campaign. The campaign’s efforts are also supported by core partners in ConAgra Foods Foundation, Food Network and Walmart.

For more information or to get involved in any of these programs, visit their website at Strength.org. Also, to find a summer meals site online, go to NC.NoKidHungry.org, or text “FoodNC” to 877-877.