SPOKANE, Wash. – Over 300 Second Harvest volunteers put together meal kits Saturday for children who rely on school lunch programs to take home on weekends.
Second Harvest’s Bite2Go program partners with schools and community partners to get weekend food supplies to children in need during the school year. Volunteers from around the Inland Northwest spent their Saturday putting together meals that include a mix of healthy, non-perishable food items that cover four meals and three snacks for the weekend.
These meals are then given to school staff members who discreetly put the packages in the backpacks of students in need. Second Harvest Volunteer Center Manager Conor Ellert said he thinks the program does help quite a bit.
“They don’t really know where their next meal is coming from unless they’re at school. So over the weekend it’s really hard for them, so they have the consistency of this Bite2Go kit and they can know they have something to snack, something to eat over the weekend,” Ellert said.
Bridie Riddeich is a counselor at an elementary school in Cheney and said she has seen the days her students come to school without being fed.
“They’re still hungry, they’re not getting enough at home because times are tough. They’re not ready to learn, they’re not ready to be able to do what they need to do to get the job done,” Riddeich said.
Saturday’s event brought together many types of people who have previously benefited from Bite2Go or work in communities that do. They say there is no great good than being able to serve and feed their community. Bite2Go Director Chris Sloan said Second Harvest tries to promote the big build as a family friendly event.
“Kids can see the impact that they can make by helping just put some food packs together for some of their peers in the community,” Sloan explained.