Letter to the Editor: Helping our hungry children
Close to half of the children in Shenandoah County schools receive free meals during the school year. These are paid for by central government funds, not county funds. Many of these same children lack sufficient food during the school holidays. Beverly Polk, food service supervisor for Shenandoah County Public Schools, deserves enormous credit for deciding to organize a school-based summer feeding program. This is the first time that this has been attempted in our county, and aims to reach those children who otherwise would go hungry.
Experience with summer feeding programs elsewhere indicates that they are most successful when transport is provided, food is delivered to low-income neighborhoods or free educational and recreational activities are provided for the children. But clearly these are not things that the school nutrition service can organize.
For people who are concerned about hungry children in Shenandoah County, the immediate challenge is to find a way of getting them to W.W. Robinson Elementary School. Lunch will be provided every Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 11.30-1.30, July 6 – Aug. 6. Everyone 18 years and younger is entitled to a free lunch, and everyone will be treated equally.
The initiative is a wonderful one and Beverly Polk deserves our respect for making it happen.
Ann McBroom, executive director, A SMALL HAND infant pantry, Edinburg