The solution to ending child hunger is a task that requires participation from the state and federal government, private businesses, the local community, individual families, and parents. The roots of the problem are systemic and can seem overwhelming. At NourishNC we’re taking steps to end child hunger in New Hanover County, NC.
Put Free & Healthy Food Right into the Hands of Hungry Children
The Backpack Program’s primary focus is to provide supplemental food assistance to chronically hungry children in New Hanover County. Our goal is to enhance children’s health and well-being by preventing the disastrous consequences of child hunger. We serve these children every weekend and across all school breaks. NourishNC accomplishes this in several ways:
- The Backpack Program: K-5 children receive 8 meals, 2 snacks and fresh produce (apples, oranges, sweet potatoes, avocado, etc.) every weekend. Food bags are delivered to the schools where social workers or family counselors then discreetly put the food bags into the children’s backpacks.
- Power Boxes: Pre-K, middle and high school students receive monthly boxes that are picked up at our warehouse, delivered to the Hemenway Center, delivered to the schools for pick up by parents, or delivered to the client’s homes by NourishNC. These boxes contain four weekends worth of food and fresh produce.
- Break Boxes: For all school breaks (Summer, Spring, holiday) NourishNC provides all children on our program with at least 3 meals a day, healthy snacks, juice, milk and fresh produce.
- Our bags and boxes often contain “extras” like toiletries, winter hats and gloves, school supplies, healthy & easy recipes, holiday stockings stuffed with toys, and information on community resources.
- Our program is provided at no cost to our kids or their families.
- Children are enrolled in our program by school personnel (social workers, counselors, teachers, school nurses, etc)
- NourishNC has a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with New Hanover County Board of Education that allows us to operate in all NHC schools
Part of what has made NourishNC successful to date is that we actively seek out local community partners to help us in our mission. We see ourselves as another strand in the social safety net. We’re connected with local food banks, outreach organizations, non-profits, community leaders, and local politicians. We work with them at all stages of our involvement. From identifying the children we help, to assisting us with purchasing, and fulfillment.