The Backpack Program provides food assistance to any student with an economic & nutritional need.
raised by 14 people
The Lexington Community Foundation and Lexington Public Schools have been working since 2009 to implement the Backpack for Kids Program. This program provides students with nutrition, who may not otherwise have access to food. In 2009, the program began offering backpacks of food to children in need. The Backpack for Kids program now offers assistance through the use of vouchers in place of backpacks. Vouchers replaced the backpacks in order for the students to receive assistance in a more discreet fashion and to accommodate the needs of different cultures. This program is critical to many of the students at Lexington Public Schools, as 61% of students in the 2021-2022 school year received free or reduced lunches.
The mission of the Backpack for Kids Program is to provide food assistance to any student with an economic need and whose nutritional needs are not being met.
How it works:
Students who qualify due to being economically disadvantaged and not having their nutritional needs met receive ten-dollar vouchers to be used each week at Plum Creek Market Place. Vouchers are given on a monthly basis from September through April. These vouchers are used to purchase food items only. The goal of the program is to provide a minimum of fifty students with vouchers each week. Donations and grants are used to purchase the vouchers.
The Backpack for Kids Program works with various food assistance programs in the Lexington Public School System and the Lexington community to ensure that no child goes without their basic nutritional needs being met. The goal of these various programs is to serve 100% of the students in need. The Backpack for Kids Program hopes to help at least 50 families in need.
One of the families impacted by The Voucher Program was able to buy healthier food for their family. In the past, the family was not able to purchase fresh fruits or vegetables because of the expense, and the assistance provided by the voucher program allowed them to be able to afford this healthier option.
Other families have shared they have been able to use their money to purchase other necessary items (basic clothing, medical costs, etc.) because they have had assistance with their groceries. - Alma Beccera, Migrant Liaison
In the role of the district social worker, the large number of students from food-insecure households is concerning. The weekly food vouchers offer relief to these families! One day a boy approached Kristi in the hallway to ask if he could get the envelopes with food coupons. He told her his father recently became unemployed, and his mother was only able to work odd jobs. Hesitantly, he shared that sometimes there was not enough food for the family. The Backpack Program is a great addition to the community resources to help students like this! – Kristi O’Meara, McKinney-Vento Liaison
Donations made to Backpacks for Kids through the Lexington Community Foundation's Give BIG Lexington will increase the number of students we are able to assist.
Consideration of a gift is appreciated!
This fundraiser supports
Lexington Community Foundation