Second Harvest Food for Kids program underfunded
SECOND HARVEST FOOD BANK OF EAST TENNESSEE STUGGLES TO PROVIDE FOR ALL HUNGRY CHILDREN NEEDING HELP
Food for Kids program underfunded
MARYVILLE, Tenn. — Second Harvest Food Bank is struggling to feed all children going hungry in our community. At-risk kids get free food while at-school but many do not have anything to eat over the weekend. Though it only takes $60 for Second Harvest to feed one hungry child weekend meals for an entire year, the number of kids that need to enter the Food for Kids program is outpacing the Food Bank’s limited resources.
Food for Kids is a collaborative effort between Second Harvest Food Bank and schools throughout East Tennessee. The strategy is simple. Teachers identify children in their classrooms whom they believe are going without meals at home. These children are discreetly given a sack full of healthy food for themselves (and any siblings they may have at home) every Friday throughout the school year.
There are currently 11,300 children who need to receive weekly bags of food at 240 different schools across 18 East Tennessee Counties. Second Harvest has just 89 of the 240 schools currently linked with financial sponsors who cover the Food Bank’s food expense to supply children at that school. The average annual food cost to feed hungry kids at one school is $3,000.
Second Harvest desperately needs additional donors who are capable of sponsoring a school for $3,000 or even one child for $60 per year. Without immediate additional funding, Second Harvest will not have the resources needed to feed all of the children that area teachers believe are going without food over
the weekend. Finances are so short that the number of children being served will be limited to 50 of the neediest children per school, until sponsorship funds can be secured.
“It’s a terrible situation; we are going to have to deny some children service because the finances simply are not there to get all the food that we need.” – Elaine Streno, Executive Director
Donations may be made online at www.secondharvestetn.org or donors may send checks to Second
Harvest with the note: Food for Kids.