Monday, June 16 2014 8:52 AM EDT2014-06-16 12:52:39 GMT
Waterloo Schools begins its Summer Food Service Program Monday, June 16.More >>
Waterloo Schools begins its Summer Food Service Program Monday, June 16. More >>
CEDAR RAPIDS (KWWL) -
School's out for summer. For kids, that means fun and games. But for parents like Nova Richardson, summer can be stressful.
"I have three boys at home, so it's kind of a lot to feed that many boys," said Richardson, who lives in Cedar Rapids. "It's nice to be able to take them to the park and have a meal already there for them, and it's a lot easier for me as a mom, too."
Richardson takes her kids to one of the summer meals sites. Groups like Horizons partner with local, state, and federal groups to offer free meals to kids from ages 1 to 18.
This year the Linn County program is expanding, offering more sites than in the past. A lot of the sites are located near parks or pools because organizers want to take the food to where the kids are.
"Some of the sites are set up to do activities with kids, and we're set up near parks and pools and splash pads so that there's something for the kids to do besides just come for a meal," said Dianna Young, Meals on Wheels Director.
At the kickoff there were plenty of games, balloons, and high fives from McGruff the Crime Dog.
Kids even got to meet former NFL player Aaron Kampman, an eastern Iowa native.
"A kid might not be getting a nutritious meal at home, so to be able to provide that is a wonderful benefit to help make sure they continue to grow," said Kampman.
For families like the Richardsons, it really makes a difference.
"It's great knowing that they're actually getting something good for them to eat," said Richardson.
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