School aged-children (Pre-K thru 12) need to eat everyday regardless of financial income/economic status. We are in a state & country of incredible wealth yet we still have kids who are going hungry and for what purpose? The state isn’t funding enough for basic lunches or snacks. But we can find extra money for nonsense items. Our priorities are a little skewed.
There needs to be a better process & programs in place to fund school lunches for all kids to eat, stay healthy & strive. It has been proven in numerous studies that when kids are well-fed, they tend to do better in school with test scores & overall attitude. We all know when you start to get hungry, how you feel…groggy, attitude changes, headaches, your mind isn’t focused. That’s how we are as adults. Children do not know how to express this is what is going on with them, they shouldn’t have to deal with those issues or worry about where their next meal so coming from.
So how do we address this? Let’s start by properly funding the local food banks or churches that are packing items for folks. Asking stores , restaurants & churches to donate either money, food &/or supplies. Organizing a viable plan that can succeed for the long-term, not the here and now. This isn’t a problem that goes away after one family is fed. There will be many more after that. We need to address them all, as all situations are different & unique. Let’s position ourselves to be in front of these situations as they arise and be ready to help when called upon. Why aren’t we a city that is a leader in helping our families & school aged children to be properly fed? Why are we wasting and throwing out food?
Here is the biggest issue: Teens/School-age kids will not be as willing to talk with someone about the situations at home. How do you make them comfortable with wanting to tell their story without feeling like they are a burden?
Idea: Start focus groups with some of the school leaders to see what they think is going on. Gather some ideas and support.
Start a food drive one weekend a month to start. People to gather, sort & pack bags. Everything is needed. We know if a child is going without food, they probably are going without the other basic needs.
As a parent, how do you see another who needs yet you choose to ignore their situation despite how you may personally feel for particular group, kids are kids & we need to treat them with a bit of humility, dignity & respect. Think about if it were your family or someone close to you. Would you go above and beyond to help. Wouldn’t you want the same for your family?
State & Local government officials need to be more involved in providing for our community in all areas. Let ‘s get off our personal horses, roll up your sleeves & dig into the root of these issues ad come to a solution to help. By NO MEANS, should we have as many hungry and helpless children in our schools. Let’s get this done. This is a national crisis not just local. Get your city, county & state officials to be aware of the issues. Keep going above the next person. Make it a problem for them as well. Make them uncomfortable with the issues as well. Force them to move to action.