Help children succeed

Help children succeed

July 6, 2021 in From Denise's Desk Harvest Time Newsletter

During the pandemic, the lives of children in the Ozarks changed drastically. It was difficult for them to understand why they couldn’t hug their friends at school or even sit with them at lunch. On top of this mental strain, some kids didn’t get enough to eat. While life continues to be unpredictable, our Weekend Backpack Program provides children in the Ozarks with something they can count on.

The Weekend Backpack Program provides weekend meals for more than 1,600 children facing food insecurity in the Ozarks. When children don’t get enough to eat, they’re more likely to repeat a grade in elementary school, experience difficulty focusing, and have more social and behavioral problems. These effects can create a lasting impact on the mental and physical health of the child.

You can help us give children the food they need to succeed. Each backpack provides kids with three meals, a snack and beverages for each day of the weekend. The program has made a difference in the lives of so many children across the Ozarks. A teacher at Bowerman Elementary told us about one young student’s experience receiving a backpack.

“A third grade student was given a backpack, and then he put his hands on the counselor’s arm and said, ‘Thank you. Thank you very much!’” she shared. “He returned to the classroom, lifted up the backpack and said, ‘I got a backpack!’ It was like he just won a gold medal.”

Your generous support makes this impact possible. Most of the funding for the Weekend Backpack Program comes from Hungerthon, our annual radio-thon with iHeartRadio Springfield Sept. 10–13.

Please consider making a donation to allow us to continue to support this critical program. You can sponsor a child for just $360, or $30 a month, and they will know that each weekend during the 2021–2022 school year they will have enough to eat.

To donate, click here and select the “Weekend Backpack Program” designation from the dropdown menu. Thank you!