AMARILLO, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) — Spring Break is here and students are starting their week off from school, but hunger is not taking a break.
Snack Pak 4 Kids is stepping up their game to make sure kids do not go hungry.
Executive Director Dyron Howell said leaving school before a break can be a big stressor for kids, knowing they could face food insecurity.
“There’s five days with no lunch and breakfast consistently, maybe everyday for them,” Howell said. “And so what we do is probably more critical in these times than it maybe is during the school week, just because of the the gap that happens over a break like this.”
Howell said Snack Pak 4 Kids is a part of 50 communities in the Panhandle and this weekend, more than 12,000 kids will take a snack pack home.
Because of their donors, communities, and volunteers, Howell said thousands of kids will not have to worry about where their next meal is coming from.
“This week, we invested over $50,000 just for this week, to make sure our kids have extra,” he said. “And I think what’s what’s important is they see that that bag there, they see that that tote at their school more than once this week. So it’s like, ‘Oh, my goodness, they didn’t forget about us.'”
Snack Pak 4 Kids will host a drive-thru pickup on Friday, March 17th from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Kids can pick up snack packs at any of these locations:
- Rogers Elementary
- Wills Elementary
- Hamlet Elementary
- Travis Middle
- Humphrey’s Highland
- Power Church
- Caprock High School
The organization exists to end weekend hunger, working with schools as a resource for educators so kids can come back on Monday, and after long breaks, ready to learn.
“I think sometimes we may take for granted, something that seems so simple, yet it has a profound impact on our kids, both in the classroom, just mentally and just taking them potentially out of that survival mode.”
In January, they started a program to help households where grandparents are the primary caretakers called the Tillie Project.
“It is a profound need and we’re seeing a significant response to what we’re doing for our grandparents and I think it takes a lot of pressure off of them,” Howell said. “They’re already got a lot of things on their plate and just knowing that we’re there is a big deal.”