Here I Am Missions Launches Partnership To Address Child Summer Hunger
Summer oftentimes is a season of hunger for children in Middle and West Tennessee. Without access to free and reduced-price school meals and in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, many families in our community are struggling now more than ever to provide the healthy, nutritious meals their children need to grow and thrive.
Recognizing the growing issue of child food insecurity in their area, Here I Am Missions – a Second Harvest Partner Agency located in Hohenwald (Lewis County) – stepped up and expanded their services. With the help of Second Harvest, the food pantry teamed up with Hope Hohenwald – a local non-profit that hosts summer day camps for at-risk children – to provide meals and snacks to local kids in the community.
Child Hunger Is Rising
Feeding America projects that 1 in 3 children in Lewis County are food insecure, a 34 percent rise since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. This trend is being seen throughout Middle and West Tennessee, where it is projected that child food insecurity has risen by nearly 57 percent overall in Second Harvest’s 46-county service area as a result of pandemic crisis.
With studies showing that limited access to regular meals and healthy foods can have a negative impact on a child’s development and future potential, Second Harvest and our Partner Agencies’ child feeding programs – like Here I am Missions’ – are crucial to preventing hunger’s short- and long-term affects on our community’s kids.
Addressing The Need
Here I am Missions is now providing much-needed meals to around 100 at-risk kids a day who attend the Hope Hohenwald summer camp – cereal for breakfast, tray packs for lunch, as well as BackPacks and snacks. This is in addition to the food they distribute to 300 households several times a month.
Second Harvest is thankful for our ongoing partnership with Here I Am Missions as we work together to feed our hungry neighbors in Middle and West Tennessee.