17,868 additional meals provided for children across North Dakota this summer
FARGO, N.D. – At the Great Plains Food Bank, we believe when children are fed they are equipped to learn, grow and reach their full potential. And following the largest summer in the history of the Great Plains Food Bank Youth Summer Meals Program, more children than ever across the state of North Dakota returned to school this fall following a summer with better nutrition.
Operating at a total of 14 different locations throughout the state, the youth summer meals program provided an unprecedented 23,270 meals for children in need. This is an increase of 17,868 meals over last year’s total of 5,402 meals.
“Children will always be a high priority for us in the work we do,” Great Plains Food Bank Child & Senior Program Manager Jenae Meske said. “Children don’t choose their circumstances and we always strive to offer the best programs we can to feed children in need. I want to thank all the champions in each community that helped make this our best summer ever for youth summer meals.”
The youth summer meals program was created to offer a supplement for children who rely on the school lunch and breakfast program during the summer months when school is not in session.
The program works with volunteers inside each community who identify locations throughout the state then host feeding sites. Food for the program was purchased by the Great Plains Food Bank from JA Foods along with utilizing donated and purchased milk. This year locations were operated in Cannon Ball, Dickinson, Elgin, Enderlin, Fargo, Jamestown, West Fargo and Williston.
Along with its backpack program and school pantry program, the youth summer meals program is one of three programs offered by the Great Plains Food Bank to combat childhood hunger. In a single year, 36 percent of those served by the Great Plains Food Bank are children, which equates to more than 50,000 kids.
Learn more about how the Great Plains Food Bank is feeding children in need HERE.