Summer food program helps local kids and their families

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CROCKETT COUNTY, Tenn. — Having food on the table is something most people do not have to worry about. But many kids who are now on summer break do not know where their next meal is coming from. Mid-South Food Bank and Bells First Baptist Church are partnering together over the next 10 weeks to provide breakfast and lunch every day of the week for 260 children in Bells. The Summer Harvest Program is held at First Baptist from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. every Thursday. Chief operating officer for Mid-South Food Bank Tonya Bradley said the kids take home boxes of easy prep meals, and on three nights of the food drive they will get to choose from fresh fruits and veggies to take home. “We are hoping to change the mindset not only in the child but that they would take the product home to their families and introduce recipes and new ways of changing eating habits,” Bradley said. But this food program is different from most summer programs that have the children go to a certain location and eat the food there. “The difference in ours is that we allow the kids to take home food to support the family,” Bradley said. “I think it really sheds light on food insecurity that we all take for granted, that as long as we got food in our cupboards that everybody has that, and it doesn’t,” Bradley said. The boxes contain weekend meals for the whole family in addition to the kids’ daily meals. The Summer Harvest Program will last until July 30 and will provide almost 71,000 meals for kids and their families in the next two months.

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