Summer meal programs face challenges in feeding low-income youth in Greater Cleveland

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Summer meal programs face challenges in feeding low-income youth in Greater Cleveland

Plain Dealer – Summer arrived officially this week, bringing with it new challenges for programs scrambling to make sure low-income kids can still get nutritious food while they’re out of school.

Some Cleveland meal sites put out a call for volunteers, while the Cleveland Foodbank announced a new fundraising appeal to feed rising numbers of children in need. Experts say that kids who qualify for free or reduced-price meals at school often go hungry when classes end.

“We know a large number of children are not eating as well in the summer as they did in the school year, and that’s pretty tragic,” said U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown, a Democrat who has crusaded for years to ramp up summer feeding programs for low-income children.
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Last year, a Cleveland Foodbank poll revealed that one-third of kids at its summer feeding programs said the Foodbank meal was the only one they ate daily.

“We knew we had to do more, we had to expand our program as quickly as we could,” said Foodbank Vice President Kristin Warzocha.

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