Northeast Iowa Food Bank starts Summer Food Service - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Northeast Iowa Food Bank starts Summer Food Service

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WATERLOO (KWWL) - Moms and dads, summer vacation has finally arrived. The school bell won't be ringing for the next few weeks, but Iowa kids will still need nutritious food throughout the summer.

Some children across eastern Iowa rely on free or reduced-cost breakfasts and lunches at school nine months out of the year; so two meals not provided during the summertime can pose a challenge for many families.

The Northeast Iowa Food Bank officially begins its Summer Food Service Program this week. At the Salvation Army in Waterloo, which is one serving site, kids can eat breakfast and lunch Monday through Friday during the summer.

The food bank has participated in summer feeding since 2005, but this is the first year in which the food bank had to apply for state funding for its summer food program. Directors said they expanded the program, adding locations in Evansdale, New Hampton and Oelwein this year.

Karen Erickson, Director of Programs for the Northeast Iowa Food Bank, said enrollment numbers for her programs usually increase by roughly 300 to 400 families during the summer. She anticipates serving about 200 kids just through the Summer Food Service Program.

Erickson also said this is first year in which the Iowa Department of Education has partnered with an Iowa food bank in support of a meal program and is providing additional funds for this summer's service.

The Summer Food Service Program will last 40 days, ending Aug. 15. Directors said families can sign up at any of the meal sites to register their children for summer meals.

More information regarding the Northeast Iowa Food Bank and its summer meal offerings can be found at www.northeastiowafoodbank.org.
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