Hometown Heroes: Children's Hunger Alliance

Published: Jun. 22, 2020 at 11:41 AM EDT
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One in five children has not had enough food to eat during the coronavirus pandemic. To help mitigate that crisis, one Ohio organization has been setting up shop all across the state providing meals to kids in need. The mission of the Children's Hunger Alliance has always been to make sure children have food but the way they accomplish that mission has changed.

"Schools closed in the middle of March all across the state," says Cindi Marshall, "and that catapulted us into a program we have for after school meals, moving it into emergency food service for children."

The state-wide organization has been around for 50 years and works specifically with school districts. Since the pandemic, they are now hosting pop-up food distribution sites throughout Ohio. Last week, they made a stop in Toledo. Every child receives free and reduced-price breakfast and lunch.

"There are over half a million children that live in food-insecure homes and many of those children have been impacted even more significantly because a lot of their parents are out of work," explains Marshall.

The organization works with private donors and national chain restaurants like Panera Bread to bring in fresh, healthy food for kids in need. As kids will be out of school through the summer, these pop-up food distributions will still go on across the state.

For more information or to find out how to donate, you can