Washington State has a breakfast problem. More specifically, Washington State has a problem when it comes to ensuring low-income children have access to breakfast year-around. In February, the Food Research & Action Center (FRAC) released their annual School Breakfast Scorecard, which measures how many low-income students participate in the federally funded School Breakfast Program.
Summer is an exciting time, but for some families it’s a time of uncertainty. More than 300,000 children in Western Washington don’t have access to the meals they normally get at school, leaving many families in a difficult situation.
How can kids learn if they are hungry?
Not always having access to the food you need or only having access to poor quality food impacts your health. Several studies have shown that living in a household with little or no access to healthy food or where it is not clear when or where your next meal will come from increases the risk of diabetes, heart disease, and high blood pressure. People don’t feel good when they are hungry—period.
Summer is an exciting time, but for some families it’s a time of uncertainty. More than 300,000 children in Western Washington don’t have access to the meals they normally get at school, leaving many families in a difficult situation. This is where Kids Cafe comes in.
“The food is so good.” “Every day it’s something new.” “I like when they give me apples.” “I come to the Boys and Girls Club because you feed me."
What do these quotes have in common?
They all come from kids who are enjoying meals provided through your support of Kids Cafe.
We got word that Congress may be drafting language for the next Child Nutrition Reauthorization bill. The current legislation expires September 30 of this year – at that point Congress needs to have either enacted new legislation or pass a continuing resolution for the included programs to continue operation.
Getting kids to eat is sometimes tough, but it’s even tougher if there isn’t enough food on the plate. That’s why Food Lifeline is expanding the Kids Cafe program. This spring, we are adding four new locations to the after school meals program!
“We will reach so many children that need our help,” says Kids Cafe Coordinator Stephanie Jamieson. “Across these new locations we will feed 90 more kids every day in Snohomish County.
Texas transplants, Amanda and Ed have always been able to provide for their four children, including Jordan, 14, Trevor, 11, Preston, 10 and little Shaylee, 3. But when Ed found himself unemployed for a long stretch, things got tough.
“The kids sometimes have a hard time understanding why they have to sell things, downsize, move away, etc.,” says Amanda.
Fortunately, Ed got a job at Boeing this year and moved his family north from Texas. It was the right move, but according to Amanda, it’s wasn’t an overnight process.
A healthy and happy childhood is one of the greatest gifts you can give. A new initiative in King County proposed by Executive Dow Constantine called “Best Starts for Kids,” will help make healthy, happy childhoods a reality by focusing on three areas of investment: pregnancy and early childhood, school-age children, and healthy and safe communities.
In King County, only 12% of adults and 26% of middle and high school youth consuming recommended levels of nutritious fruits and vegetables, there’s considerable room for improvement.