Today is the first day for an expanded mobile lunch delivery program offered by the Thurston County Food Bank. The idea is to get a nutritious meal to those children who otherwise might go without a midday meal because of tight family finances and inability to get to a summer lunch program site.
There are thousands of students in Thurston County who qualify for free- or reduced-price breakfast and lunches during the school year because they are living at or below the poverty line. When classes end, those young people often do without, and some families are too proud to ask for help.
In an effort to ensure that needy youngsters get lunch, last year Food Bank Executive Director Robert Coit and his staff began delivering sack lunches to up to 160 hungry children in Olympia and Lacey.
The food bank started the mobile lunch program with private funds to reach out to families without easy transportation to the 10 U.S. Department of Agriculture-sponsored summer lunch program sites in South Sound.
This year, the mobile lunch program has added three new sites and again, will rely on the generosity of the community to ensure that hungry kids are fed. The food bank will use two vans to drive the routes this summer, instead of the one that the food bank used last year, according to program coordinator Cheryl Falkenburg.
It’s great to see a community need identified and a thoughtful and creative solution put in place. This is a great community.