School is Out! (What does that mean for local children?)

by | Jun 21, 2018 | #feedingfutures | 0 comments

It’s summertime.

The kids are out of school and sprinklers are set up in the yard. Bedtime is a bit later, and homework feels like something of the past. The pools are filled with joyful kids, and their parents are slathering sunblock on their shoulders.

But as any parent knows, summertime is an expensive time. The electrical bill goes way up as we try to keep our houses cool in the hot summer heat, and those trips to the pool certainly can add up. The kids also seem to grow more during the summer, and new shorts and new sandals will need to be fit into the budget…somehow.

And then there is childcare.

Nationally, 2 out of 3 children have all available parents in the workforce and thus the need for quality childcare is a necessity year-round. These parents still work during the summertime, and studies show that nearly 40% of all workers lack any paid vacation time. This means that these parents are stringing together complicated schedules of babysitters and camps: American families can expect to spend 20% of their income this summer on childcare. In North Carolina, the cost of childcare is even more burdensome: here, the percent of the median summer income spent on childcare is 22%.

For any family, these incredible increases in expenses would be a struggle, but for low-income families it means that something has to give.

Far too often, families on tight budgets cut back on food expenses. This is at a time that children are out of school and have lost access to the nutritious school breakfasts and lunches they may have qualified for during the school year. In nearly all of the 18 counties that Second Harvest Food Bank serves, more than half of school children come from families whose incomes qualify the kids for free or reduced priced meals.

Parents in these families struggle to stock their refrigerators with the food their children need to stay healthy and strong during the summer months. Some children simply go without.

That is why Second Harvest Food Bank has again teamed up with our partner network to provide healthy, nutritious summer meals to kids at 26 locations across 5 Northwest North Carolina counties.

We are also helping stock the shelves of our partner programs across all 18 counties that we serve, making sure that there is enough food to meet the increased need.

Will you help support our work feeding children this summer?

All gifts made to Second Harvest between now and June 30th, 2018 will be matched $1 for $1 by our Circle of Champions of Kids, making your gift go twice as far.

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