Summer Food Service Program sites are open to provide meals to children who normally receive free or reduced-price meals during the school year.
Nora Balduff with the Ohio Association of Foodbanks says without the program, children can face nutrition setbacks and learning losses in the following school year.
NB: Your kid needs to be able to have nutrition to learn and grow. We're talking about the developing body, a developing mind, and lack of adequate nutrition at this time of their lives can affect them for the rest of their lives.
The program is offered in a variety of locations including schools, churches, community centers and parks and often is combined with learning and recreational activities. Balduff says there is a need for more communities to get involved and organizations to become program sites.
NB: You can start small and just learn what works, and if you change one child's live for the summer, you're successful. It's a wildfire; people out there really want to help, they just need to know how they can help.
Balduff says last summer 10 percent of children who received meals during the school year were able to access summer meals. For a list of free summer food programs in Columbus, go to the Recreation and Parks Department webpage at http://parks.columbus.gov/SummerFoods.aspx, or call (614) 645-3300