Feeding program provides lunch for some needy children - WSFA.com: News Weather and Sports for Montgomery, AL.

Feeding program provides lunch for some needy children

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MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) -

Most kids like to be out of school for the summer.

But some could be going hungry.

Of the nearly 400,000 kids statewide that receive free and reduced lunch at school during the year, only 30,000 of them get it during the summer.

But the Montgomery YMCA is working to change that. 

Most every kid loves lunchtime. 

"It is amazing," says 9-year old Chandler Tyler.

But adults like Sharon Hollis do, too.

"It's just awesome to be here with the kids."

She's a 20 year employee of the YMCA and has helped with the food program here since it started.

"Every child should have something to eat," says Hollis.

But they didn't always. Before the program, kids were required to bring their own lunches.

"We had to have a plan. We had lunchables or things on hand [for kids who couldn't bring lunch.]," says Jeff Reynolds, Senior Vice President of the Montgomery YMCA.

And now, "we serve 18 sites. 11 of those are YMCA sites and 7 of those are non-YMCA sites," adds Reynolds.

Five years ago, leaders started feeding every child enrolled in YMCA summer programs.

Just recently they expanded it to other organizations like Common Ground Montgomery, the Boys and Girls Clubs and to locations in Elmore county.

"We're serving about 2,150 children each day."

The meals are prepared by Montgomery Public School cooks and delivered to each site.

"And it's our job to make sure we count and make sure we have the number of meals that we have ordered," adds Hollis.

The State Department of Education reimburses the YMCA's food costs.

"It's about $2.62 a meal."

The program will likely grow.

"Our whole goal to this point is to try to serve as many people as possible," adds Reynolds.

And while the kids will probably never know how this meal made it to their mouth, one thing is for sure.

"It's really just fun to be here and eat with your friends," adds Tyler.

If you'd like your organization to partner with the YMCA's feeding program, call 334-269-4362.

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