‘Breakfast Bag’ program provides meals to children while school is out
Program extended into the school year for the first time since its inception
–During the summer months, the SLO Food Bank works with a network of community partners to distribute breakfast bags to children who lack access to regular meals. These reusable drawstring backpacks are filled with several weeks’ worth of balanced breakfasts, educational nutrition activities, and recipes. Each backpack is supplemented with a small bag of assorted fresh produce and is sent to a high-needs site that serves families.
Grant funding from the Albertsons Foundation Nourishing Neighbors Campaign, Community Foundation San Luis Obispo County, and Central Coast Funds for Children purchases nutritious and shelf-stable breakfast items that youth can easily prepare, increasing nutrition security for SLO County children throughout the summer.
“We are incredibly grateful to receive the support needed to continue to fill the summertime meal gap for children in our county,” said Tara Davis, Nutrition and Children’s Programs Manager at SLO Food Bank. “Thank you so much to the network of organizations involved in making this program a success and recognizing the importance of keeping children nourished year-round so they can grow and thrive.”
Access to nutritious meals during the summer is vital for children across our county, whose risk of food insecurity increases when they cannot access free and reduced-priced meals when school is out of session. In response to the virtual and hybrid academic year that resulted from the COVID-19 pandemic, the Breakfast Bag program extended into the school year for the first time since its inception.
“Our families have been receiving breakfast bags for the past 10 months. The children and their families have been enjoying and appreciating the Breakfast Bags as well as the fresh fruits and vegetables,” said Fatmeh Elmasri, Program Supervisor at First 5 of SLO County. “By receiving these bags, the children are encouraged to eat healthily as well as help prepare the food they are receiving. The bags have been a tremendous help during the hard time our community has been passing through.”
To learn more about the work done by SLO Food Bank throughout San Luis Obispo County, please visit www.slofoodbank.org.