Families struggling to feed their children can get some assistance this summer at Cole Elementary School, 5060 Colemont Drive, in Antioch, from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. June 13-July 22.
A new food program from Metro Schools and the U.S. Department of Agriculture will help school-aged children in Nashville who may experience hunger during summer break. Through the district’s Nutrition Services Department and Department of Extended Learning Programs, four locations in Nashville will fill the nutrition gap and make sure children get the nutritious meals they need. The program will be free to children ages 0 to 18, regardless of whether or not they attend Metro schools. Adults aged 19 and over can receive meals at a reduced cost of $3.75.
The program is paid for through the U.S. Department of Agriculture and comes to Nashville at no net cost to taxpayers.
“We recognize that families sometimes need assistance meeting the health and nutrition needs of their children, particularly when school is not in session,” said Dr. Tony Majors, chief support services officer for Metro Schools. “We are happy the summer feeding program can play a part in supporting our families during the summer break.”
According to the latest Map the Meal Gap study, one in five children in Middle Tennessee are food insecure, or without access to enough food to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Not only is hunger one of the most severe roadblocks to the learning process, but inadequate nutrition can lead to long-term health consequences.
“Lack of nutrition during the summer months may set up a cycle for poor performance once school begins again, making children more prone to illness and other health issues,” said Jennifer Bell, director of Extended Learning Programs for Metro Schools.
“During the school year we serve 92,000 meals a day district wide. We are happy to continue serving students who may otherwise miss out on a meal during the summer months,” said Spencer Taylor, executive director of Nutrition Services for Metro Schools.
Families can call the Family Information Center at 615-259-4636 for any questions about the Summer Feeding Program.