Backpacks for Breaks

The club has organized a backpack food program at a local elementary school during the upcoming and past school breaks from 2019 and into the future. This is a new service project for our club, and a new way to strengthen our partnership with Howard County Public Schools. In consultation with the HCPS Partnerships Office, we have been connected to a local elementary school in Columbia. 

The student community at this elementary school faces extreme food insecurity. Many kids are not eating at home at all, and those who do eat at home are not getting enough food. Most of the behavioral issues seen at school are rooted in the fact that the students are hungry. We partnered with this school for a highly-successful Winter Break Backpack food program in December 2019. Our Kiwanis club was able to provide 48 students with backpacks filled with 30 nutritious meals and snacks. 

The school was overjoyed to receive our help, and we want to be able to continue to support the school and its students. The school leadership has asked that, if possible, we create backpacks for 50 students to take home during Spring Break. Each backpack would be filled with three meals a day (plus a few snacks) for 10 days, inclusive of foods that kids can make for themselves without parental assistance. That is 30 meals per student. For 50 students, that is 1,500 meals. 

Our Kiwanis club wants to do even more. In fact, we want to double our impact. We have a goal of packing 100 backpacks for the students at this elementary school. When we accomplish this, even more kids in our community won’t need to worry about where their next meal will come from during the days when school, often their weekday source of lunch, is closed. 

In order to double the number of backpacks we are creating, we have set a goal of $1,500. Each backpack and its contents costs $30. We encourage individuals, organizations, and businesses to join with us by sponsoring the cost of a backpack. A donation of any size matters to us and to the kids in our community who will benefit from your generosity.   

This is our challenge. Kids in our community are hungry and Kiwanis is here to address that. Will you help us to double our impact?