Hunger Action Month – PowerPacks for Kids

By: Tobey Solomon-Auguer

1 in 6 kids in Washington worry about where their next meal is coming from, according to Northwest Harvest. At FamilyWorks, we work hard to help families put meals on the table, and get connected to essential resources, but we know we’re often just one piece of the puzzle for families facing hunger.

When schools closed, the importance of stopgap measures like school meals became painfully clear. In March, an emergency federal waiver allowed our school districts to provide food for every student regardless of household income. And right now, over 1,300 schools and hunger relief organizations are demanding that the USDA extend this waiver until the end of the school year. If the waiver expires, countless school kids are at risk of losing essential food resources.

As of September 4th, there are 40 free meal sites in Seattle and 8 bus routes delivering meals to kids all over the city. But, as students return to remote schooling in an ongoing pandemic, the need for additional food resources has only grown.

FamilyWorks is working alongside schools to fill the gap by providing “PowerPacks”—bags filled with easy-to-prepare and yummy foods to keep kids going over the weekend. We are currently providing 75 bags a week to Food for Schools, BF Day and Bagley, and are actively preparing to take on up to 150 bags a week.

We know that when kids go hungry, or anyone goes hungry, it’s hard to focus on anything else.

One way you can take action against hunger this month is to host a food drive or donate some of the much needed items that help us fill these PowerPacks. Take a look at the list below or give us a call at 206-694-6722 to learn more.

PowerPacks include:

– Small shelf-stable milks
– Packets of instant oatmeal
– Small boxes of cereal
– Healthy fruit/granola bars
– Kid-Friendly Snacks (goldfish, trail mix etc.)
– Fruit Cups/Applesauce/ Fruit leathers
– Meals in a cup (Soups, Mac n’ cheese, Chef Boyardee)
– Juice boxes
– Canned veggies

 

Resources:

– https://www.northwestharvest.org/about-us/hunger-facts/

– https://www.seattleschools.org/resources/student_meals