Food 4 Kids was created in 2004 when it came to the attention of school teachers that many children were not being fed over the weekend.
Our “backpack program” was created to provide food for at risk children, that qualify for free lunch. Guidance counselors at the schools provide referrals for children to receive a backpack. Food 4 Kids then fills each backpack with enough food for each child in the household, to eat over the weekend.
The week begins at Food 4 Kids by our volunteers that pack durable, rolling backpacks full of food for each household. The volunteer delivers the backpacks directly to the school, tagged for each child. The child takes the backpack home on Friday afternoon and returns them to school on Monday morning. Then, the volunteers pick up the backpacks at the school and the process starts all over again. Our volunteers are vital to this program.
Backpacks can include: canned pasta, macaroni & cheese, peanut butter and jelly, pudding & fruit cups, snack bars, oatmeal, pop tarts, crackers and fruit snacks.
Thanks to our donors and volunteers, we partner with over 40 schools in Marion County. In the last several years, we’ve consistently had over 1,900 students enrolled in the program, providing more than 200,000 meals each school year. Food 4 Kids makes a huge difference in the lives of hungry children by enabling them to focus on learning instead of their hunger.
The program depends on the donations of time and resources from individuals, churches, businesses and organizations. The average cost per child is approximately $25.00 a month. Help us ensure that no child goes to bed hungry in Marion County. To find out more about Food 4 Kids, contact Karen Fant or call her at 352.620.8239.