Program to help fight child hunger in Flint - WNEM TV 5

Program to help fight child hunger in Flint

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(Source: WNEM) (Source: WNEM)

For some children, meals at school are the only reliable source of food they have.

When school is not in session some of those children may not eat at all, but one school district hopes a local program will change that.

It's called the Backpack Program and it provides students with a backpack full of nutritious and easy to prepare food to take home on weekends.

The Food Bank of Eastern Michigan announced the expansion of the program to all Flint Community Schools.

"All the children between the ages of kindergarten to fifth grade are now receiving a backpack, that live in the city of Flint, every week until the end of the school year," said William Kerr, food bank president.

According to the USDA, more than 13 million children in the U.S. live in homes where they do not have access to healthy food.

Kerr said the program helps fight the problem on the home front by stuffing backpacks full with food.

"We will add over 5,000 children and the children in the program right now that receive a backpack every Friday. So they have food for the weekends when sometimes they are food poor," Kerr said.

Teachers and volunteers will fill the backpacks up with things like macaroni and cheese and peanut butter.

Tyanah Greggs, student, said she has been a part of the program and now volunteers for it.

"It makes me feel good that people care about us, care that we get this food," Tyanah said.

Kerr said the program will end after the current school year, but will pick back up when kids return to class.

"We will continue the program in the fall when school starts again," Kerr said.

The program is made possible because of a grant from the Michigan Department of Education.

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