Mayor Allen Joines and Superintendent Don Martin of the Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools today announced plans to again collaborate to ensure children who need breakfast and lunch during the summer months are served by the school system’s summer nutrition program, and appealed for volunteers to make it possible.
Volunteers are needed to help serve children at schools designated as feeding sites, and to monitor the cafeterias. No cooking will be involved.
The inaugural “Summer Feeding Program for Hungry Children” last summer brought a 17 percent increase in the number of lunches served compared with 2006. The 2007 program offered breakfast for the first time, and the average number meals served per day increased by more than 200 compared with 2006.
“With the help of more than 50 volunteers, we made a significant increase in the number of meals served to hungry children last summer,” Martin said. “But when you consider that more than 24,000 students qualify for reduced or free meals, we can still do better.”
Joines said that his office will again coordinate the services of volunteers. “We were very pleased with the turn-out for the first year of the program, but with the help of individuals, churches and service organizations in the community, we hope to do better this year.”
Last year the YWCA, the city Recreation and Parks Department and the Salvation Army Boys and Girls Clubs participated in the program. Volunteers from Calvary Baptist Church brought meals to children at Hanes Hosiery Recreation Center, which was not near any of the feeding sites last year, said Alexandra Milner, the church’s director of community ministries. “This year, we hope to have more volunteers and serve a second recreation center,” she said.
The collaboration between the city and the schools is a result of the Leadership Winston-Salem 2006 Action Learning project on summer feeding recommendations.
This year the summer feeding program will begin June 16 and end Aug. 8. The program will provide both breakfast and lunch. Volunteers are needed for both meals. For more details and to volunteer, call the mayor’s office at 727-2058.