For the seventh time in the past ten months, Saint Martin’s emergency food program served more than 300 families this month. About 2/3 of these families have school age children who will soon be losing the extra nutrition and calories provided by school breakfast and lunch programs.
In Caroline County, more than 2000 school students participate in the reduced price school lunch program. Only two agencies in the county offered summer food service to school age children in 2012. Summer feeding last year reached only 277 students.
The overall poverty rate in Caroline County is 14.9%, with a childhood poverty rate of 12.1%.
Sponsor a food drive to help Saint Martin’s add extra family friendly foods to our food boxes during the summer months. Check our Food Donation Policy for the list of family friendly foods we’d like to have.
Here are some tips for doing a quick food drive:
- Think of a group that you belong to that would be interested. The group can be any thing you want – your golf buddies, your church, your bridge club, your 10 best friends, people you work with.
- Share some of the information in this article to help people understand the need.
- Select no more than 2-3 foods from the list. Peanut butter and jelly is always a good combination, or Mac’n cheese or low sugar cereal. Folks like to have a choice, so that’s why I say select 2-3 items from the list.
- A drive can be as simple as everyone in the group decides to bring the items to the next get together. Or as big as you think you can handle!
- Decide how your group wants to publicize the drive – a flyer, information in the newsletter or church bulletin.
- Establish a collection place/time/location. Have boxes for the items to be placed in. Decorate the boxes if you want to – pictures of the food or pictures of children work really well.
- Be sure to time limit the effort – a weekend, two meetings – whatever is appropriate for the group.
- Let us know when you want to bring the food to Saint Martin’s so we can get a good picture!
- Get in touch with Jean Austin, our Operations Officer, at operationsdirector [at] stmartinsministries [dot] org if you have questions or need more information.
If this all sounds like too much to do – here’s another easy way to help: Click on Donate Online on our web site. Be sure to say emergency food, or summer food or just FOOD, in the purpose line on the donation screen.