There are 54 million K-12 students in the United States and 22 million of those students qualify for free or reduced breakfast and lunch, but COVID-19 has closed school doors throughout the country. 1 in 8 children struggle with hunger in Colorado, and now, summer break will make it even more difficult for kids to get the food they need. Many of those students and their families rely on the school meal system to provide the nutrition growing minds need while taking the burden off parents to provide that nutrition, during a time where unemployment is topping 13% in the United States.
The “Meals to You” program is changing that by delivering meals right to your door, no matter how far you are from the city, and they’ve delivered 45,860 meals in rural Colorado, for free. Food for Good is part of PepsiCo’s, and part of a collaboration with non-profits, to help feed an unprecedented need, by the millions. Food for Good senior manager, Doug Hargis, is spearheading this project to help rural kids, and knows from experience how a 30 minute to an hour commute can impact the food budget. “There is a great disparity of the where the food is, and where it’s needed, and that’s what we at Food for Good have been trying to work on for over a decade now. The Meals to You program was developed in response to school children all across our nation being displaced by COVID, very simply put,” says Hargis.
The meals from the Meals to You program contain all the nutrition essentials backed by the USDA, like protein, crackers, fruit, and juice, so the kids get what they need to be healthy, and getting that food was the problem, until now. Doug says, “What the Meals to You program does, is packs ten breakfasts, and ten lunches of this shelf-stable meal into a box, and we deliver those directly to the doors to the children in these rural areas.”
The Meals to You program has the goal of bridging the gap and delivering the meals to you, and they’re delivering five million meals per week through all 50 states, including the Centennial State, and even Puerto Rico. “Colorado specifically, I’m happy to say that over 100,000 meals have already been delivered, and there’s more on the way.”