ETX Food Bank kicks off summer backpack program - KYTX CBS 19 Tyler Longview News Weather Sports

ETX Food Bank kicks off summer backpack program

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JACKSONVILLE (KYTX) -

In a total of twelve locations around the area, the East Texas Food Bank launched its eight annual summer backpack food program Friday.

The program provides children from low-income families a supply of food that will last the weekend, and usually comes inside a backpack that's returned later.

The Our Lady of Sorrow Catholic Church hosts both the summer backpack program and the daily summer food program which provides children a free hot meal each day around lunch time. Volunteers there have committed to driving around the city five days a week, picking up the children who qualify for the program, taking them to the church to eat, and then taking them home.

The food bank's Karolyn Davis said the need is greater than many people imagine, especially for families who are used to relying on school districts' free and reduced-cost lunch programs.

"Summer hits and so that's extra meals you're needing to provide," Davis said. "That can be a struggle for some families. We want to help fill that gap and provide those meals to children."
 
This year's summer backpack program was made possible by a $20,000 grant from the ConAgra Foods Foundation. This is the fourth year in a row the East Texas Food Bank has been rewarded the grant.
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