In Massachusetts, 363,000 kids qualify for free or subsidized breakfast and lunch during the school year. And when school is out, children in families that struggle with food insecurity can’t always count on regular, healthy meals.
That’s why this summer we once again continued our partnership with Project Bread, the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education and the Summer Food Service Program (SFSP). Our commitment helped to bring meals to nearly 12,000 children a day in Boston and several surrounding communities during the summer months. Preventing hunger during the summer helps ensure that kids return to school healthy and ready to learn in the fall.
Over the course of the summer, we had the chance to join with a number of special guests while visiting with local organizations that participate in SFSP. Recently, Mayor Marty Walsh joined our CEO and President Gary Gottlieb, MD, to meet some of the children of East Boston at the Ashley Street YMCA.
In Springfield, we joined kids at Calhoun Park as they enjoyed lunches of hot dogs and hamburgers in the company of Senator James Welch. Senator Joan Lovely also joined us at Palmer Cove with kids in her district of Salem for turkey and cheese wraps, apples and ice-cold milk.
This is the fourth summer that we’ve partnered with Project Bread and SFSP. All meals are free to youth 18 years and under, no registration or sign up necessary. Last year, our support helped to provide more than 400,000 meals throughout the summer. This year, we hope to do the same.