Many children in our community get their breakfast and lunch at school at a reduced price or for free. But when school is closed on weekends and holidays, many of these children go hungry.
The BackPack Program from SapiBon Foundation, Inc. provides children in need with bags of nutritious food they can take home and easily prepare on their own.
Why the BackPack Program?
Good nutrition is critical to good health and success at school. Children who don’t get enough to eat often have:
- Trouble concentrating
- Lower math and English scores
- Difficulty interacting with peers
- Trouble finishing tests on time
- Lower graduation rates
Children participating in the BackPack Program during the 2016-2017 school year showed improvement in their energy levels and ability to concentrate, as well as a reduction in food insecure behavior such as asking for seconds or stealing food.
What is in the BackPacks?
Items in the packs are:
- Individually packaged, or small and light enough to carry
- Easy to prepare, even without a stove or other equipment
Each BackPack bag weighs about 5-6 pounds and comes in a plastic grocery bag. The menu for each week’s bag includes 1-2 items from each of the food groups:
- One “meal” item such as macaroni and cheese or soup